Former Australian captain Steve Smith’s return to international cricket is set to be derailed due to an elbow injury. The right-handed batsman, who was plying his trade in the Bangladesh Premier League for Comilla Victorians, had to return to Australia due to a sore elbow that will now require surgery.
Cricket Australia on Saturday confirmed that the 28-year-old will undergo surgery on Tuesday next week for a damaged ligament in the elbow, which will require him to wear a brace for six weeks, before starting off his rehabilitation process.
The injury flared up when Smith was captaining his BPL side for the first two games and was seen with heavy strapping over the irritated area. Later, he returned to Australia for a check-up after initial MRI scans were not clear.
The surgery comes as a major blow to Smith’s return to the national side with his 12-month ban for ball tampering coming to an end in March. It still remains unclear when the batsman would be fit to return to the squad.
The setback has come with less than six months remaining for the start of the World Cup tournament in England. The injury will see the batsman miss Pakistan Super League and Indian Premier League before the start of the World Cup.
At the Bangladesh Premier League, Steve Smith managed scores of 16 and 0 for Comilla Victorians. The batsman last played an ODI for Australia in January 2018, against England.