ASHES 2019: Steve Smith out of Lord's Test with delayed concussion; Marnus Labuschagne approved as substitute

Labuschagne became the first-ever concussion substitute in the history of Test cricket.

Marnus Labuschagne replaces Steve Smith at Lord's | Getty Images

Steve Smith has been ruled out of the ongoing second Ashes Test match at Lord’s due to delayed concussion. He is also now in doubt for the third Test at Headingley in Leeds, which starts on August 22.

Smith was struck on the neck by a Jofra Archer bouncer on Saturday and was forced to retire hurt on 80. He came back to bat after initially passing the concussion test, and went on to score 92, but showed symptoms of concussion on the morning of the final day's play.

Australia named Marnus Labuschagne as the replacement for Smith in the ongoing Test match, with new ICC rules permitting substitutes for concussion.

"Steve has been closely monitored by medical staff overnight and this morning reported that after sleeping well, he woke with “a bit of a headache and a feeling of grogginess," Cricket Australia said in a statement.

"Steve reported that his left arm which was also struck during his innings yesterday was “much better”.

"As part of the Cricket Australia concussion protocol, repeat concussion testing of Steve Smith was also performed this morning and demonstrated some deterioration from his testing which is consistent with the emergence of the symptoms he was reporting.

"On that basis Steve has been withdrawn from the match by team doctor Richard Saw and the Australia team will lodge an application for a concussion substitute with the ICC match referee in line with the ICC protocol.

"Cricket Australia statistics show that 30 per cent of concussions in Australian cricket are delayed. It is not uncommon for players to pass their tests and feel well on the day of an injury and then display symptoms 24 - 48 hours later."

"In terms of Steve’s availability for the third Test, this will be considered over the coming days but the short turnaround to the next Test is not in his favour. Steve’s fitness will be assessed on an ongoing basis.

"Steve will undergo a precautionary scan on his neck on Sunday.

"Despite the unfortunate nature of what has happened, the positive is that the concussion protocol, including the availability of the concussion substitute, which has been recently brought in has served its purpose.

"A player is no longer under pressure to take the field when he or she displays symptoms of concussion and a side is not disadvantaged having lost a player to a blow to the head or neck.

"Cricket Australia is proud to have been leaders in this area, having introduced concussion substitutes in domestic cricket and worked with the ICC to introduce them in international cricket."

(With inputs from Cricketnext)


By Saurabh Malhotra - 18 Aug, 2019

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