Aprilia MotoGP rider Aleix Espargaro has announced he will not be able to take part in this weekend's Malaysian Grand Prix at Sepang.
Espargaro fractured the fourth metacarpus in his left hand after crashing out in last weekend's Phillip Island race at Turn 1.
The Spaniard opted against having surgery on the injury, as this would likely have ruled him out of being able to race at Sepang.
But now he has confirmed he will have to return back to his native Spain for an operation after all, which prevents him from being present for the penultimate round of the season.
"The idea after the injury was to avoid surgery and to try to race here in Malaysia," said Espargaro.
"Unfortunately, the situation is forcing me to go back home for surgery so that I will be able to fully recover for Valencia. In agreement with Dr. Mir, we agreed to have the surgery done on Thursday in Barcelona.
"It was an unfortunate crash, but I am already focused on the last race of the season where I want to demonstrate the level that the Aprilia RS-GP and I have reached."
Aprilia has confirmed it will not replace Espargaro, making Sam Lowes its sole rider for the Sepang weekend.