Smith expected to return for domestic season

23 July 2021 01:36:45 GMTPlus10

New South Wales head coach Phil Jaques says Steve Smith could recover from injury in time for the start of the Australian domestic season.

Smith's Australia are 1.33 to beat England, who are 5.50 to win with the draw 7.50, in the Ashes Series 2021/22.

Smith sustained an elbow problem towards the end of the last domestic season, which also caused him problems when turning out for Delhi Capitals in the Indian Premier League.

As a result, the top-order batsman was out of action for Australia's series with West Indies and Bangladesh and he is now fighting to be fit for both the Twenty20 World Cup and the Ashes.

But the 32-year-old has previously stated that his focus is on being available for the Ashes, having fired 774 runs and been named Australia's player of the series in the last edition in 2019.

Hopefully he'll be ready to go once the season kicks off.

Phil Jaques

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Smith is now gradually working his way back to full fitness and is taking part in pre-season preparations with New South Wales, who he helped win the 2020/21 Marsh One-Day Cup earlier this year.

And coach Jaques has confirmed Smith, who has been with New South Wales since 2007, is making steady progress and could be ready in time for the new domestic season, which gets underway later this year.

Speaking to ESPNcricinfo, New South Wales head coach Phil Jaques said: "He's been building it up nicely.

"He's been very conscientious about his rehab and in terms of how long he bats it for, he's building up his time which is great and his elbow is responding really well to it.

"He's definitely moving in the right direction - he's not going backwards. Hopefully he'll be ready to go once the season kicks off."

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