In a major blow to Australia, swashbuckling batsman Steve Smith has been ruled out of the upcoming third Test of the three-match Ashes series against England due to concussion.
Smith was hit on the back of his neck by a bouncer bowled by Test debutant Jofra Archer while batting at 80 during his side's first innings on the fourth day of the drawn second Test at Lord's Cricket Ground. The former Australian skipper immediately fell down on the ground following a blow before being attended by the physios of the two sides.
Subsequently, he retired hurt and was sent for the concussion test. After some time, Smith returned to the field and went on to play a valiant knock of 92 runs.
To play in the third Test, Smith was required to bat against top pace and show no signs of dicomfort in order pass the fitness test ahead of the match.
However, Australian coach Justin Langer now confirmed that Smith is all set to miss the Leeds Test after the star batsman sat out the side's training session on Tuesday, the BBC reported.
Langer, however, didn't reveal who will replace Smith in Australia's Playing XI in the upcoming third Test, beginning August 22 at the Headingley Carnegie in Leeds.
Earlier, Smith was forced to miss the final day of the second Test after another concussion test was conducted before the day's play as per Cricket Australia protocol and it "demonstrated some deterioration from his testing which is consistent with the emergence of the symptoms he was reporting."
Marnus Labuschagne was called into the squad to replace Smith for the match's final day and he became Test cricket's first concussion substitute.