Gabriel only bowled five overs in England’s chase, during which he removed Kevin Pietersen, and subsequent investigation showed he would not be available for the second Test at Trent Bridge which starts on May 25. The management have decided to send him back to the Caribbean to recover. Kemar Roach (ankle) also struggled towards the end of the first Test while Ravi Rampaul missed the match with a neck problem.
“Shannon made the complaint late in the first Test against England and scans conducted following the match showed a stress reaction in the lower spine,” CJ Clark, the West Indies physiotherapist, said.
“He was subsequently ruled out of the second Test and, after further consultation, we feel that to prevent this injury developing any further, it is in Shannon’s best interest for him to return to Trinidad & Tobago for rest and rehabilitation to ensure he is fully fit when selected for West Indies in the future.”
Best, 30, played the last of his 14 Tests in 2009 against Bangladesh in Grenada when West Indies were hit with a mass player walkout. However, he was recently named in the one-day squad for the series against Australia although, he did not make the XI for any of the five matches.
He has taken 28 Test wickets at 48.67 with a best of 4 for 46, although his record against England is better with 13 wickets at 32.37 from five matches. One of those games came in 2004 at Lord’s which is where the well-known sledge “Mind the windows, Tino” came from Andrew Flintoff when Best was trying to slog Ashley Giles in the stands towards the end of the match.
Best has forced his way back into contention with consistent performances in the regional four-day competition in the Caribbean where he picked up 17 wickets at 20.64 during the 2011-12 season.