New Zealand pacer Lockie Ferguson has been ruled out of the ongoing T20I series against Sri Lanka, after fracturing his right thumb at training.

Ferguson sustained the injury while fielding a ball at practice on Saturday night at the Pallekele Cricket Stadium, with an x-ray later revealing a small fracture to the middle joint.

Coach Gary Stead confirmed Ferguson would return home to New Zealand in the coming days.

“It’s a shame for Lockie to have to miss this series, especially coming off the back of such an impressive World Cup campaign in England,” Stead was quoted as saying according to a New Zealand Cricket media release.

“The thumb has been put in a splint and is expected to take four to six weeks to recover; so we’re optimistic he’ll be available for the five-game T20I series against England, which starts on November 1 in Christchurch.”

Talking about the series so far, the Black Caps on Sunday defeated Sri Lanka by five wickets in the first T20I of the three-match series. Ross Taylor was declared Man of the Match for his 48-run knock off 29 balls, including 3 boundaries and a couple of sixes.

New Zealand face Sri Lanka next for the second T20I on Tuesday.

(With inputs from IANS)