Smith to sit out BBL to rest knee, hip injuries

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Skipper Steve Smith has knee and hip problems arising from Australia’s crushing innings win over the West Indies in Hobart but said Saturday he will be fit for the next Test in Melbourne starting on Boxing Day.

Smith will sit out the opening two Big Bash League Twenty20 games for the Sydney Sixers next week as a precaution as Australia faces almost a fortnight’s break before the second Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

“I am experiencing a little bit of that knee pain I had before the first Test (against New Zealand) in Brisbane,” Smith told reporters after his team’s innings and 212 run win over the West Indies in three days.

“I landed on it yesterday and aggravated it a little bit as well as some hip flexor soreness in my right leg.

“They might be related, but there’s a little bit soreness, so I am going to sit out the first Big Bash League games, unfortunately.”

Smith said he expected to be fit to play in the Melbourne showpiece, the biggest Test on the Australian cricket calendar.

“I am in no doubt for the Boxing Day Test but I think it’s just precautionary and I don’t think I would be able to go at 100 percent which is what you need to do in T20 cricket,” he said.

“I don’t want to do any further damage and I am going to sit them out.”

Team physio David Beakley said he expected the captain’s injuries to clear with rest.

“We expect both of these injuries to resolve over the next one to two weeks provided he gets some protected rest and rehabilitation,” he said in a statement.

“Therefore unfortunately he will not be available for the Sixers matches prior to the Boxing Day Test.”

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