No Brainer, Says Langer on Smith Missing Fourth Ashes Test

Steven Smith braved a blow on his head as he made a fine 92 before withdrawing from the game due to concussion

Steven Smith braved a blow on his head as he made a fine 92 before withdrawing from the game due to concussion

He was seen imitating Steve Smith in the nets at Headingley ahead of the 3rd Test. Smith has unfortunately been ruled out, following a concussion he picked up at Lords.

Whereas the England and Wales Cricket Board has a minimum six-day rest after concussion, Cricket Australia do not have a recommended minimum duration beyond preventing players from training or competing for 24 hours.

But, unusually, Australia refused to indulge in a war of words on Tuesday as the tourists' friendlier, touchy-feely, post-sandpapergate approach continued with their coach taking the absence of Smith on the chin, so to speak. The various boxing authorities stipulate between 28 and 45 days with no sparring or fights after suffering a stoppage of knockout defeat.

"We're here to win the Test match, not to see how many helmets we can hit", Langer said.

But Root, who will be back on his Yorkshire home ground this week, added: "You never want to see someone go off injured like that". Langer, who had defended the decision to allow Smith to resume his innings at Lord's when he passed initial tests, said the subsequent diagnosis after the later onset of the blows effects had not only educated him but also caused him to pause and think about past instances in his own career.

"We play on the WACA, we play on the Gabba", Langer said. Both Smith and Archer were engaged in an intense battle in the second Test match, and the former was hit on the neck by a bouncer bowled by the latter.

As the current holder of the Ashes, Australia is only one Test victory away from securing for their first series win in England since 2001, but without Smith they will need top order batsmen David Warner, Cameron Bancroft and Usman Khawaja to step up and deliver some big numbers.

Smith has two weeks to be ready for the fourth Test in Manchester, which starts on September 4, with a three-day tour match in Derby from August 29-31. England will be the same, I'm sure they've got plans how they'll get our batsmen out, not just knock them out, so they're working hard on it.

Archer made his Test debut in the drawn second match at Lord's and produced several spells of menacing quick bowling, hurrying the Australian batsmen up and forcing them into evasive action from deliveries that averaged more than 145kph. At the end of the day it was a no-brainer'.

Langer has also implored his batsmen to put ego aside when it comes to facing the risky Archer and the rest of the England attack.

Australia, of course, have an impressive array of fast bowlers themselves and James Pattinson is expected to return on Thursday at Leeds in place of Peter Siddle.

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