SOMERSET and England star Jack Leach is convinced he contracted the coronavirus earlier this year.

The Taunton spin bowler suffered a disastrous winter on England's three overseas tours.

Leach picked up food poisoning in New Zealand leading to sepsis.

A week after returning home to Taunton, he joined the squad as they flew out to South Africa.

But he was sent home after being unable to shake off a debilitating illness.

He recovered in time to go to Sri Lanka for the third tour, despite having also picked up a leg injury, only for that series to be called off due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Leach told the BBC he believes he had contracted coronavirus at the time of the South Africa tour.

He added: "With all the travel I picked up a cough, a temperature and just felt shattered.

"Having been through what I'd been through in New Zealand and all the medication I was on, I struggled to fight that off as well.

"It just wasn't happening, so we decided the best thing was for me to come home."

Leach, who has Crohn's disease, is currently in the England training camp ahead of the Test series against West Indies, which is due to get underway on July 8.

He told the BBC: "There's nothing I can do about what happened in the winter.

"It's quite unfortunate how it happened. It's the way it is, so I just have to take it on."