Joe Root: England captain absent from training as illness hits tourists again
Watch day one of the third Test between South Africa and England, live on Sky Sports Cricket from 7.30am on Thursday
Last Updated: 13/01/20 12:38pm
Joe Root was unable to practice because of illness as England ramped up their preparations for the third Test against South Africa on Sunday.
The England captain was absent from the team's session in Port Elizabeth because of a stomach upset, the second time he has suffered with illness on a tour which has been dominated by absences.
Illness has plagued England since before the Test series even begun with Root one of the casualties, although players were then affected by flu-like symptoms rather than stomach issues.
S Africa vs England
January 16, 2020, 7:30am
More than a dozen players and support staff were affected with Ollie Pope, Chris Woakes and Jack Leach all ruled out of the first Test because of it.
Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes and Root spent time off the field at Centurion where England were soundly beaten.
The issue had eased by the time the second Test began in Cape Town, although neither Woakes or Leach was selected.
But it was injury which affected England before and during that match, which Root's men won to level the series, with Rory Burns suffering ankle ligament damage ahead of game while playing football and James Anderson breaking a rib on day five at Newlands.
Both players will miss the remainder of the series in South Africa and Burns will also miss the tour of Sri Lanka in March after having surgery on his ankle.
On who replaces Anderson in Port Elizabeth in the third Test from Thursday, Sky Sports' Michael Atherton said: "They have a choice of three - [Jofra] Archer, Woakes and [Mark] Wood.
"Woakes is 100 per cent fit while the other two are at about 70 per cent and will have to prove their fitness on Monday - they will have to step up to full intensity a couple of days ahead of the Test match."
Watch the third Test between South Africa and England, in Port Elizabeth, live from 7.30am on Thursday on Sky Sports Cricket.