The worst has happened for Australia. Their best batsmen — the second-best in the world — has been ruled out of the Headingley Test. Steven Smith suffered from concussion when one of Jofra Archer’s bouncers hit him on the head during the Lord’s Test. Australia head coach Justin Langer confirmed the news on Tuesday.
In other bad news, Marnus Labuschange, who was Smith’s concussion replacement at Lord’s, was hit by Mitchell Starc in the practice session, although there was no serious injury report. He will yet again replace Smith in the third Test.
Before The Ashes 2019, Labuschagne had hit three hundreds and as many fifties and scalped 8 wickets in his six County Championship matches. If anything, Australia will get another bowling option.
Smith is the highest run-scorer of the series, having accumulated 378 runs at a spectacular average of 126, including 2 hundreds and 1 fifty. After the stellar performance, he jumped to the second spot — only behind Virat Kohli — in the ICC Test Rankings for batsmen.
Australia lead the Ashes 0-1, and another win will help them retain it. England, however, have found the momentum. They will give their all to keep their arch rivals at bay.
NOTE: Try fantasy cricket and get to know your cricket skills.