England top order batsman Nick Compton is to take an immediate break from cricket after a challenging start to the season "both physically and mentally", Middlesex and England management said on Thursday.
The decision means the South African-born No.3 is unlikely to figure in the upcoming Test series against Pakistan, with his spot in the XI already in doubt after a disappointing series against Sri Lanka.
"It has been agreed that the best way forward is for Compton to spend some time away from the game," Middlesex said in a statement, which did not indicate how long the break might be.
The county side's managing director of cricket, Angus Fraser, said a break "will allow him to refresh, recharge and return to play the sort of cricket we all know he is capable of producing."
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The statement added that Compton would receive the full support of his county and England management.
Compton, 32, has been suffering a run drought and scored only 51 runs from five innings during England's recent three-Test series against Sri Lanka.
The grandson of England great Denis Compton, the batsman said last month that he felt his England career was on the line.
"I want to feel good about my batting and I want to feel good about contributing to the England team," said Compton, who has played 16 tests, with an average of 28.70 runs.
"Those are my driving motivations. If you don't play well enough you get dropped. That's fundamentally how it works."
Meanwhile, Durham batting-allrounder Scott Borthwick has reiterated his desire for an England Test recall.
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The 26-year-old left-hander, who played his one Test in Sydney in 2014, could be in line for a recall against Pakistan in July.
"I'm massively determined to have another crack at it," Borthwick told BBC Sport.
"It's nice to be talked about and batting at three for England is my goal but it's up to me to score the runs."
Borthwick has scored more runs - 1,136 runs - in first-class cricket in 2016 than any player in the world, other than England wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow.
"There's still a lot of cricket to be played before the next Test.
"It's in my mind because it's getting spoken about but I have to bat with a clear mind and get some runs."
Like Australian captain Steve Smith, Borthwick started his international career as a spinner, but has since moved up the order to No.3 for Durham since his one-off Test appearance.
"I was an opening batsman who could bowl in the Durham academy, but first came into the senior side as a spinner. It was always my aim to get up the order," he said.