The former England opening batsman Michael Carberry has been diagnosed with a cancerous tumour, his county Hampshire have announced. Carberry, who is 35 and played six Tests, six one-day internationals and one T20 international for England, had been feeling unwell recently and Hampshire said in a statement that “further tests will be undertaken before the relevant treatment commences”. The club’s chairman, Rod Bransgrove, said: “Michael has been part of the Hampshire cricket family for 10 years and on behalf of everyone at and associated with the club, I would like to send him and his family our very best wishes at this very difficult time. Carbs has taken on and beaten serious illness before and we will be doing all we can to make sure he does the same again this time.”

This is not the first time Carberry has suffered health problems. Having made his England debut in Bangladesh in 2010, he suffered blood clots on the lung resulting in a shortness of breath, and was ruled out of the game for nine months. He recovered to return to play for England again, appearing in all five Test matches on the disastrous Ashes tour of 2013-14 and, despite often equipping himself well against the fearsome pace of Mitchell Johnson and Ryan Harris (only Kevin Pietersen scored more runs in the series than Carberry), he was dropped from the Test side by new management immediately after that series. His last international was an ODI against Sri Lanka in May 2014. He played in Hampshire’s County Championship draw at Durham last week but missed the match against Warwickshire this week due to his illness, which was making him breathless while batting and fielding. “He has had a problem that has not cleared up in the way we had hoped so his going to have some tests done,” Hampshire’s first-team coach Dale Benkenstein said when he missed the game at Edgbaston.

“We are hoping to have him back for the T20 matches later in the week but in view of what has happened to him in the past we do not want to take any risks with him. It is a little bit worrying but hopefully the tests will show that everything is fine.” After a recent match with Somerset, his Benkenstein admitted that Carberry was struggling for motivation now his England career was over. “We are trying to find some motivation for Carbs,” said Benkenstein. “I think it’s tough when you don’t have England any more. You just lose your oxygen. When you’ve had one thing as your goal and suddenly it goes, and you’ve never really thought about anything else – you’ve always wanted to play for England.”