Australia batsman Steve Smith has said that he is ready to skip T20 World Cup in order to be available for all the five Ashes Tests.
Smith has withdrawn from the limited-overs series against West Indies and Bangladesh due to an elbow injury. The T20 World Cup is slated to be played from October 17 to November 14 in the UAE, and the Ashes will begin on December 8.
“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,” cricket.com.au quoted Smith as saying.
“I want to put myself in a position where I can have that kind of impact. If that does mean not partaking in the World Cup, then we’ll have to go down that path, but hopefully we don’t have to go there,” he added.
Smith has said that the Ashes remain his primary focus and he will do everything to be fit for the all the five Tests.
“The Ashes is the primary focus from my point of view, so I need to be in a position where I can bat for long periods of time, and at the moment I can’t do that, which is annoying,” said Smith.
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“But I’m getting there slowly, which is hard – for someone who wants to hit a million balls, it’s not great being capped at 15 minutes. But I understand now that this sort of thing can take some time, and if I want to get myself right for the summer, then I need to take these measures seriously, and take my time,” he added.
Smith has scored 1,969 runs at an average of 93.76 in 14 Ashes Tests and he has managed to score eight hundreds.
Talking about his injury, Smith said: “I still wasn’t quite 100 per cent 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.”
“It got to a point where it wasn’t really improving much, and it probably got a little bit worse while I was over there. I’ve made a bit of progress with it the last few weeks. I started some batting, just 10 minutes at a time, and basically my path now to getting back to playing is building up from there,” he added.
Press Release, Source: ANI