In what comes as sad news for all the Australian fans, Steve Smith is set to miss the limited-overs series against Pakistan. He is yet to recover from his elbow injury and has decided not to take any chances. It is to be noted that he picked up this injury last year.
Smith was recently seen playing the three-match Test series against Pakistan. He played a crucial role in ensuring that his side win the series. Despite not scoring a century, the legend scored three half-centuries in four innings. In the process, he also became the quickest batter to score 8000 runs in the longest format of the game.
However, this isn't a serious injury and the move is just a precautionary one. He is set to undergo rehabilitation for his injured elbow and would hope to recover as soon as possible. In the meanwhile, Australia have announced Mitchell Swepson as his replacement. Kontouris, who happens to be Cricket Australia’s Sports Science and Sports medicine manager, drew light on Smith missing the limited-overs games.
“Given he had an injury with the same elbow last year, we felt it important to manage this proactively. Withdrawing him … means Steve will have the necessary time to rehabilitate his elbow to ensure his continuing availability and performance for Australia. But by staying on top of things now, we can ensure that it doesn’t become something more significant further down the line,” said Kontouris, as quoted by CricTracker.
The Aussies will be playing three ODIs, followed by a one-off T20I against Pakistan. The one-day series starts on March 29. In the meanwhile, Australia's chief selector Geroge Bailey explained the decision to replace Smith with Swepson. He stated that the spinner is familiar with the conditions in the Asian nation as he has been there for the past month.
"We have decided to include Mitchell Swepson in the white ball squad because it will offer us additional options in the bowling department on surfaces that may well assist spinners. Mitchell was part of our Twenty20 International squads in both the West Indies and Bangladesh last year, as well as at the T20 World Cup, and having been in Pakistan for the past month he is familiar with conditions. We know if called upon he will do an excellent job," said George Bailey in a statement.
Australia ODI and T20 squad: Aaron Finch (c), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Jason Behrendorff, Alex Carey, Ben Dwarshuis, Nathan Ellis, Cameron Green, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Marnus Labuschagne, Mitchell Marsh, Ben McDermott, Marcus Stoinis, Mitchell Swepson, Adam Zampa