Steve Smith may be forced to put his comeback on hold. Picture: STR/AFP
Steve Smith may be forced to put his comeback on hold. Picture: STR/AFP

Surgery threatens Smith comeback

BANNED former Test captain Steve Smith needs elbow surgery and may not be ready for his return to international cricket on March 28, or for the World Cup.

Cricket Australia officials confirmed on Saturday that Smith, who was sent home from the Bangladesh Premier League, had ligament damage, putting his World Cup aspirations in jeopardy.

"Steve Smith will undergo surgery on Tuesday to repair a ligament in his right elbow. He is expected to wear a brace for six weeks before commencing rehabilitation," a CA spokesperson said.

"Return to play time frames will be clearer once the brace has been removed."

Smith and fellow banned batsmen David Warner were pencilled in as certainties to return to the Australia line-up for a five-game, one-day series against Pakistan in April, a vital tune-up before the World Cup in England.

But a six-week minimum rehabilitation period would potentially put his return back.

Selectors have to pick a 15-man World Cup squad by April 23 and may need to select and hope he's fit for the tournament which begins for Australia on June 1st against Afghanistan.

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