Quick turnaround may see Steve Smith miss third Ashes Test

Tanya Simon
August 19, 2019

"So he is just recovering and sleeping, taking some time to feel better then after that he begins the process but there is obviously a very short time before the next Test".

Smith - who was playing his second Test after serving a one-year ban for his involvement in the Sandpaper Gate fiasco - has been subjected to harsh treatment by the Lord's crowd even though he showed vast courage during the course of his innings at the Home of Cricket.

Archer clarified that hurting the batsman was never the idea.

Smith was forced to retire hurt on 80* after the heavy blow, but bravely returned to bat after passing the concussion tests that immediately followed.

What is a concussion test?

Cricket Australia said in a statement Smith had a "precautionary scan" on his neck on Sunday, which cleared him of any structural damage.

Initially this is an on-field assessment to determine whether a concussion is established or suspected, such as whether the player feels dizzy or has a headache or nausea, or has suffered a loss of consciousness or is unsteady. He's trained to pick up even the minor signs of concussion. "(It is) certainly up to the medical staff and we'll have conversations".

So what do those tests entail?

Marnus Labuschagne is more than halfway there after his 59 as Smith's deputy, but would still have big boots to fill at Headingley.

Archer tested Smith's technique and patience during his fiery spell on Saturday, which included a number of bouncers.

"He didn't have a concussion at the time (he was hit) so he was allowed to play".

Aussie coach Justin Langer said that the blow to Smith reminded him of the tragic death.

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"He went through the concussion protocols and seemed to be coming up OK", Langer said. There's a process now, but there was no way I was going to get off that field. All he was anxious about was that he wasn't going to be able to play his forward defence because his top hand grip was hurting.

So why didn't Smith play on Sunday?

Australia then successfully applied to use a concussion substitute.

The Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA), which represents players, said it was wrong to hurl abuse at an injured player.

"The crowd could learn a thing or two from Steve Smith and I look forward to him answering his hecklers with bat and ball in hand to bring home the Ashes".

How long does Smith have?

"I think I, along with a few of the other players in the team, find it a little bit different, uncomfortable to what we're used to", he said.

"With a pretty quick turnaround in between Test matches, I'm hopeful that I can make a recovery and be OK for that."

Cricket Australia (CA) is likely to review ongoing research about the efficacy of the guards in 2020, when a change to its policy is expected to be given strong consideration.

However, if there is any regression or return of his symptoms, he may have to wait and could miss out. It was not nice of Archer to just walk away while Smith was in pain.

Labuschagne had a massive void to try and fill considering Smith's impact on the series thus far.

Therefore, it is no surprise captain Tim Paine is hopeful his former skipper will be able to take his place in Leeds. He tweeted, "Bouncers are a part & parcel of the game but whenever a bowler hits a batsman on the head and he falls, courtesy requires that the bowler must go & check on him".

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