Steve Smith ruled out of third Ashes test after concussion injury

Ashes 2019

After taking an initial look at the pitch for the third Test, Smith joined the squad's start-up huddle, but then walked away for a lengthy one-on-one discussion with Langer in the centre of the ground.

There was a slim chance he would be fit enough for the third Test and did appear at Australia's training session on Tuesday though did not take part.

Smith, 30, was hit in the neck by a 92mph bouncer from Jofra Archer on day three of the second Test, but passed an initial concussion test and returned to continue his innings.

Meanwhile, England captain Joe Root said he would have no qualms about a player withdrawing from a match because of concussion. "What we're not going to do is get caught up in an emotional battle of who's going to bowl the quickest bouncers", Langer said.

"It was really a no-brainer".

"Smith, in particular, is a brilliant batsman and whilst of course, I don't want him getting too many runs while he's over here, he's mesmerising to watch and as genuine sports fans we should be applauding him, not jeering".

However, he feels it effectively cancels out the absence of England's leading Test wicket-taker James Anderson, and stressed that he expects other members of the side to rise to the challenge.

Given the symptoms Smith had experienced the morning after his blow from Jofra Archer and the desperately short turnaround time between Lord's and Leeds, it had always been hard to imagine him being fit to bat in time. "He's arguably their best bowler, we're going to lose arguably our best batter for this Test match".

"We've got to make sure all the other guys - our senior players and younger players - step up and fill what are nearly unfillable shoes, because he's the best player in the world". Take your best players out and it always has an impact. The 24-year-old sensation was seen imitating Smith's unconventional gait while batting and even aped Smith's loosely hanging back-lift.

Tests were conducted before Smith was allowed to return to complete his innings.

However, he was unable to play on the fifth and final day on Sunday as he awoke feeling "groggy".

"I guess with the conditions in Australia you can sway out of the way, the bounce is quite true", Head said.

"If he plays four Test matches in a row, that will test him out".

England have not won any of their last eight Tests against Australia but must win at least two of the next three if they are to regain the Ashes. "It can hit you afterwards and it did with him and that's why he is out of this Test match".

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