Ashes 2017-18: Steve Smith hit by a stray ball in the nets
What’s the story?
Australia received a minor scare before the Melbourne test as captain Steve Smith received a freak blow on the hand during the net session.
However, the captain has been cleared of any injury and is all set to take part in the Boxing day clash at the iconic MCG.
"There's absolutely nothing wrong with him. He's fine.," vice-captain, David Warner said while addressing the media.
Smith was standing near the team equipments at the back of the nets when he was struck by a stray ball. Apparently, the ball ricocheted off the net and struck him on the right hand. Opening batsman, Cameron Bancroft was the responsible batsman.
Even as Bancroft rushed towards him to check on his injury, the skipper removed his glove and spoke with the team medical team.
After few deliberations, he resumed his batting practice but did not look comfortable at all, he pulled his hand off the bat handle as he felt pain and swatted his bat around in frustration.
However, he proceeded to face nine more deliveries, before calling it a day and zoomed out of the practice area.
In case you didn’t know…
Steve Smith has been in superb form in the Ashes so far and is leading the run-scoring charts with 426 runs in the three matches.
He has already scored one century and one double century and has been the difference between the two sides.
Australia have already been forced to rope in Jackson Bird instead of Mitchell Starc and hence their bowling attack does not look as ripe as it looked during the first three matches.
However, the batting and the depth in their side could well pulverise England in the fourth Test match.
Australia Test squad: Steve Smith (c), David Warner (vc), Cameron Bancroft, Usman Khawaja, Peter Handscomb, Shaun Marsh, Mitchell Marsh, Tim Paine (wk), Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood, Jackson Bird.
Australia will breathe a sigh of relief with the availability of their skipper as they are looking to complete a whitewash of England in the ongoing Ashes.
Also, with England grappling around for options in their own bowling department, a fit and firing Smith could once again dismantle the fragile bowling attack.