Cricket

Steve Smith ready to sacrifice T20 World Cup spot to eye prime fitness for Ashes 2021

All the Australian cricket fans are praying for Steve Smith’s speedy recovery with the ICC T20 World Cup and Ashes taking place later this year. The right-handed batsman has been a cornerstone of the Aussie team across formats in the last few years, and the team management would not want to miss his services in crucial events. However, the unfortunate can happen as Smith might take a while to heal completely.

For the unversed, Smith has been suffering from an elbow injury which even forced him to pull out from Australia’s upcoming tours of West Indies and Bangladesh. Speaking of his plans, Smith didn’t rule out his chances of participating in the T20 World Cup. However, the talismanic batsman also made it crystal clear that he’s ready to withdraw from the global event to be entirely fit for Ashes down under.

There’s still a bit of time between now and [the T20 World Cup], and I’m tracking okay at the moment – it’s slow, but I’m going okay. I’d love to be part of the World Cup, for sure, but from my point of view, Test cricket, that’s my main goal – to be right for the Ashes and try to emulate what I’ve done in the last few Ashes series I’ve been involved in,” Steve Smith told cricket.com.au.

“I want to put myself in a position where I can have that kind of impact. If that means not partaking in the World Cup, then we’ll have to go down that path, but hopefully, we don’t have to go there,” the second-ranked Test batsman added.

Meanwhile, Smith was last seen in the now-postponed Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 where he played for Delhi Capitals. While the Rishabh Pant-led side was on a roll in the tournament, the former Aussie skipper didn’t look at his prime. He amassed just 104 runs in six games at a mediocre strike rate of 111.82. Smith revealed that the elbow issues troubled him in that tournament as well. Moreover, the 32-year-old had to eat painkillers every time he went to bat.

“I still wasn’t quite 100 percent [during the IPL], it was still bothering me a bit, and I was playing over there medicated – taking some painkillers and anti-inflammatories every time I batted,” Smith mentioned.

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