Champions Trophy 2013 May 8, 2013

Injured Smith out of Champions Trophy

45

South Africa's Graeme Smith will miss the Champions Trophy in England next month, because of the flaring up of a long-term ankle injury that will require surgery*.

Smith had scans in London on the ankle on Wednesday and Surrey announced that he would return home to South Africa immediately to undergo an operation. South Africa are set to feature in the opening fixture of the Champions Trophy, against India on June 6, in just over four weeks' time.

Cricket South Africa confirmed in a release on Thursday morning that Smith will miss the tournament. "Graeme has been troubled by left ankle pain over the last few months and despite extensive treatment and physiotherapy, it has recently deteriorated significantly while playing for Surrey in England. Surgery will be required, and he has been advised to follow a rest and rehabilitation programme over the next four to six months," team manager Dr Mohammed Moosajee, was quoted as saying in the release. "This unfortunately rules him out of the upcoming ICC Champions Trophy in England and Wales and the Selectors will name a replacement in due course."

Smith said: "It's a big blow for me personally to be missing out on the Champions Trophy next month. Our ODI squad is creating something special and I was looking forward to being part of that family."

Titans opening batsmen Henry Davids and Lions youngster Quinton de Kock are the likeliest candidates to replace Smith in the ODI squad. It is a second setback for South Africa, as they are also without Jacques Kallis for the tournament, after the allrounder had opted to skip it due to personal reasons.

On having to cut his county stint short, Smith said: "To have to head home now, so early in my time at Surrey is very frustrating but I leave the team in a good place and hope to be back with them as soon as possible."

Smith is contracted for three years and, although Surrey are resigned to the fact that his brief tenure as captain is already at an end for this season, they are confident he will return in 2014. He will not play against Durham in the Championship match beginning at The Oval on Friday and leaves Surrey in the bottom two of the first division.

Surrey's team director, Chris Adams, said: "Graeme has made an impressive start as a leader and the squad have really responded to his leadership. It's clearly disappointing for all, especially Graeme, but we wish him a speedy recovery."

Smith missed South Africa's fifth ODI against Pakistan in Benoni at the end of March and at the time Moosajee had referred to a "chronic left ankle problem".

He added: "We have been trying to manage him but unfortunately the impingement syndrome slowed him down today and he is quite symptomatic. He has had surgery on this ankle a while ago and I think the load and the volume of cricket for the year, and particularly during this ODI series, has troubled him."

Nevertheless, Smith, who described his ankle problem as "an ongoing problem", honoured his contract with Surrey, aware that he was regarded as a prestigious signing who could bring stability to the club following a traumatic period brought about by the death on the London underground of their England Lions batsman Tom Maynard.

Ricky Ponting, the former Australia captain, has already been signed as Smith's replacement, but he was not scheduled to arrive until the start of the Champions Trophy and will see out his IPL contract with Mumbai Indians.

*05.50GMT, May 9: This article has been updated after CSA confirmed Graeme Smith will miss the Champions Trophy

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • on May 11, 2013, 19:02 GMT

    this will be a good time for us to throw de cock into the deep end and see how he does,we realy need our youngsters to get exposed to the pressures of international cricket and tournaments.

  • Kirstenfan on May 10, 2013, 9:49 GMT

    @highveldhillbilly - you got that right brother, Alviro is the man, R 100 says they go with him and 702 said the same thing this morning!

  • xylo on May 10, 2013, 3:56 GMT

    I believe Ricky Ponting would be with Surrey pretty soon.

  • 2.14istherunrate on May 9, 2013, 22:41 GMT

    It's bad luck all round,but most of all for Smith. Hope he recovers soon.

  • SevereCritic on May 9, 2013, 16:13 GMT

    Smith is by far the best captain SA has ever had. He has masterfully lead the SA test side to number 1 side in the world. 4 English captains retired after Smith was done with them. Fans across the world will miss him, like they will miss Kallis.

  • sandyyy on May 9, 2013, 13:48 GMT

    Looks like they don't want to be part of chocking any more. Kallis drops out because of personal reasons, Smith says he needs surgery. SA are a very good team but they can handle pressure. They are comfortable where things are slow like test cricket. Sad but I don't think they will win a Shorter version tournament anytime soon.

  • SuperSharky on May 9, 2013, 10:37 GMT

    It's good that AB and Faf can sometimes rely on the ex-ODI captain, Graeme Smith, for insight when needed. And Graeme has played some brilliant ODI innings' in the past, but in the future I want to see Graeme Smith playing only Test Cricket and no limited overs cricket. I don't like throwing in a lot of youngsters at once, but I've reckon last year already that Graeme Smith can be the only out of form ODI player to make way for a youngster like De Kock, Ingram, Miller, ect. I would also like to see more all-rounders back in the ODI squad, like the time when South Africa has won the first ever Champions Trophy. It would be a fairy tale to win the last ever Champions Trophy again. South Africa's Test squad got the perfect balance, but for limited overs; Consider all-rounders for middle and lower order as A.Morkel, R.Mclaren, D.Miller, J.Botha, W.Parnell, R.Peterson, J.Ontong, C.Morris, F.Du Plessis, J.Kemp, ect. Jacques Kallis absence will be a HUGE blow to South Africa.

  • highveldhillbilly on May 9, 2013, 10:37 GMT

    I really hope they select Alviro, I think he'd be a great pick.

  • KunzMan on May 9, 2013, 10:30 GMT

    @Gert James: Wait! Isn't this the wrong article for your post? Anyway, Kallis has been honest enough to say he doesn't think he is in good touch to be warranted of a place in the XI. On the contrary, he should be applauded for this.

  • on May 9, 2013, 9:41 GMT

    Should I say thats good news...a blessing in mask!!

  • on May 11, 2013, 19:02 GMT

    this will be a good time for us to throw de cock into the deep end and see how he does,we realy need our youngsters to get exposed to the pressures of international cricket and tournaments.

  • Kirstenfan on May 10, 2013, 9:49 GMT

    @highveldhillbilly - you got that right brother, Alviro is the man, R 100 says they go with him and 702 said the same thing this morning!

  • xylo on May 10, 2013, 3:56 GMT

    I believe Ricky Ponting would be with Surrey pretty soon.

  • 2.14istherunrate on May 9, 2013, 22:41 GMT

    It's bad luck all round,but most of all for Smith. Hope he recovers soon.

  • SevereCritic on May 9, 2013, 16:13 GMT

    Smith is by far the best captain SA has ever had. He has masterfully lead the SA test side to number 1 side in the world. 4 English captains retired after Smith was done with them. Fans across the world will miss him, like they will miss Kallis.

  • sandyyy on May 9, 2013, 13:48 GMT

    Looks like they don't want to be part of chocking any more. Kallis drops out because of personal reasons, Smith says he needs surgery. SA are a very good team but they can handle pressure. They are comfortable where things are slow like test cricket. Sad but I don't think they will win a Shorter version tournament anytime soon.

  • SuperSharky on May 9, 2013, 10:37 GMT

    It's good that AB and Faf can sometimes rely on the ex-ODI captain, Graeme Smith, for insight when needed. And Graeme has played some brilliant ODI innings' in the past, but in the future I want to see Graeme Smith playing only Test Cricket and no limited overs cricket. I don't like throwing in a lot of youngsters at once, but I've reckon last year already that Graeme Smith can be the only out of form ODI player to make way for a youngster like De Kock, Ingram, Miller, ect. I would also like to see more all-rounders back in the ODI squad, like the time when South Africa has won the first ever Champions Trophy. It would be a fairy tale to win the last ever Champions Trophy again. South Africa's Test squad got the perfect balance, but for limited overs; Consider all-rounders for middle and lower order as A.Morkel, R.Mclaren, D.Miller, J.Botha, W.Parnell, R.Peterson, J.Ontong, C.Morris, F.Du Plessis, J.Kemp, ect. Jacques Kallis absence will be a HUGE blow to South Africa.

  • highveldhillbilly on May 9, 2013, 10:37 GMT

    I really hope they select Alviro, I think he'd be a great pick.

  • KunzMan on May 9, 2013, 10:30 GMT

    @Gert James: Wait! Isn't this the wrong article for your post? Anyway, Kallis has been honest enough to say he doesn't think he is in good touch to be warranted of a place in the XI. On the contrary, he should be applauded for this.

  • on May 9, 2013, 9:41 GMT

    Should I say thats good news...a blessing in mask!!

  • Baseball-Sucks on May 9, 2013, 9:19 GMT

    Hmmm..Not a good news for SA. They are already man-down with the absence of Kallis. Now, Smith's absence will affect the balance of the team greatly. Yeah..there are young players like Miller, Levi, etc.. But You can't really depend on T20 heroes in a high profile event like the CT. I'm not doubting the talents of players like Miller. I think he is doing just amazing in the IPL. But we all have seen the rise n fall of T20 heroes. From now on, likes of AB, Amla, Faf will have to carry an extra bag of weight to compensate the absence of Kallis n Smith. G'luck anyway !!!

  • TommytuckerSaffa on May 9, 2013, 8:36 GMT

    Bad luck for Smith but good luck for SA fans. A blessing in disguise you have to say. Smith is not cut out for ODI cricket.This actually strengthens our batting lineup.

    I would have de Kock or Davids in his place.

  • on May 9, 2013, 8:27 GMT

    Wait! What? Kallis plays in the IPL and when his country needs him he sits out for personal reasons?

  • KunzMan on May 9, 2013, 8:10 GMT

    Aks286 did you check the squad my friend? I again say I have my reservations regarding De Kock. Seems like a very WILD shot but they can also try Parnell. Quicker bowler than Tsotsobe and also can handle the bat a bit. Tsotsobe is an opening spell bowler, who should never in his life complete his full quota. He is likely to yield as many runs in his last two overs as he is in his first eight.

  • AKS286 on May 9, 2013, 8:02 GMT

    Hmm Richard Levi or D.Elgar will fulfill the gap or Bahardein comes into picture.

  • AKS286 on May 9, 2013, 7:46 GMT

    Big ICC event is going to start and CT is the best way to remove the drought of SA. Two big and seniors are out (Kallis & Smith). Youngsters are good but on this big event any teams needs experience. Youngsters are not consistent, can't handle the pressure. Youngsters can be a match winner in 2-3 games. SA team is already having soo many Rookies. Amla, Elgar, FaF, AB, Duminy, Miller, Ontong, Petersen/Harmer, Steyn, Morkel, Tsotsobe/ Hardus Viljoen

  • Harlequin. on May 9, 2013, 7:28 GMT

    @surajdon - good call with Petersen, I'd agree with you there, especially as I haven't seen much of Davids/De Cock!!

    Losing Smith and Kallis does create a bit of a vaccuum in the top order. I would also suggest that this means De Villiers definitely shouldn't keep wicket (not sure if he was planning anyway) so he could jump up the order a bit.

  • satishchandar on May 9, 2013, 7:24 GMT

    So, here comes.. When we all blame injuries during IPL, why not blame this as injury due to county?

    I like Smith very much and he is an inspirational captain.. More than that, the future captain are not that great in limited formats.. ABD and Amla struggle a bit in limited overs captaincy.. Smith would have been a better captain in the team..

    s opener, would like Davids to replace Smith.. And, ABD should be releived of captaincy if he is going to keep wickets.. If ABD is going to captain the side, then bring in De kock as keeper and opener..

  • Surajdon9 on May 9, 2013, 7:03 GMT

    Who should replace him? IMHO, Quinton de Kock is not ready yet. Some obvious technical deficiencies in his technique were exposed in the ODI series against Pakistan. I think Alviro Petersen should be given another shot in the ODI format, this time in his preferred opening slot. He is our other Test opener, after all, and he is currently playing county cricket for Somerset, so he'll be accustomed to English conditions. In fact, he's been in cracking form for Somerset (437 runs, HS 167, average 109.25 with strike rate over 75).

  • on May 9, 2013, 6:43 GMT

    H. Davids should be the next man in. De kock had a good 20/20 season but Davids deserve an opportunity and he did good for a couple of seasons now.

  • Shazzada on May 9, 2013, 6:43 GMT

    blessing......no doubt he has served a lot for SA but now he'z out of form and also need yougsters for 2015 wc..

    My team for next years would be Ingram/Amla/Kallis/Devilliers/Du plesis/Dumini/Miller/Peterson/Steyn/Morkel/Tsotsobi ..... and bench strength Bahardin/Mclaren/de kock/kleinveldt/botha

    Best of luck team SA....from Pakistan.......this champions trophy and 2015 WC will be yours

  • Theredbaron on May 9, 2013, 6:42 GMT

    The depth of South African cricket is so outstanding that Smith will easily be replaced. AB is already the captain so there is leadership in place. I quite like Morris as a player, there is a certain X factor about him

  • on May 9, 2013, 6:24 GMT

    De Kock for sure! The next Gilchrest!

  • Ozcricketwriter on May 9, 2013, 6:05 GMT

    So two old players in Kallis and Smith are now out of the mix for South Africa. This sounds to me like South Africa are going to romp this one in. Good luck to them. About time that they won a major tournament.

  • rsnCricketCrazy on May 9, 2013, 5:26 GMT

    if smith is a doubtful starter, then sa should pick hendry davids / chris morris ahead of de kock.

  • KunzMan on May 9, 2013, 4:58 GMT

    Blessing in disguise for sure. He has over the recent years created an image / impact of being an awesome Test player. My replacement would be Henry Davids(De Kock needs to mature big time) and preferable XI would be as follows: Davids, Amla, De Villiers, Du Plessis, Duminy, Miller, Peterson, McLaren, Steyn, Morkel, Tsotsobe. McLaren is the obvious 5th bowler who will be targeted by other batsmen. I am just picking him for his Kolpak experience in English circuit.

  • on May 9, 2013, 4:29 GMT

    Play kallis as an opener with Amla as he played opener for kkr.

  • Venkiviru on May 9, 2013, 4:02 GMT

    why he is not in ipl???????

  • jmcilhinney on May 9, 2013, 2:29 GMT

    @Cpt.Meanster on (May 8, 2013, 20:54 GMT), he should probably focus on something useful like the IPL.

  • Shongololo on May 9, 2013, 0:03 GMT

    Definitely a blessing in disguise as Smith's ODI form has been rotten for a long while now. As 2nd_slip said, similar to the Boucher situation - and look at how the Test side has performed since that 'blow'. Time to be bold, place trust in de Kock, give him a decent run and I'm pretty sure he won't disappoint.

  • Robster1 on May 8, 2013, 23:45 GMT

    If Smith is unfit his replacement has to be de Kock.

  • thirdmanboundary on May 8, 2013, 23:27 GMT

    Pick Davids. De Kock has gone seriously off the boil, needs time to mature. All best wishes with the ankle surgery, Biff.

  • on May 8, 2013, 23:17 GMT

    Why did this not happen last summer so we didn't have to play him.

    Smithy a bloody good cricketer... Get well ASAP. The cricket world does need you!

  • Dale_Pain on May 8, 2013, 22:53 GMT

    Smith scored about 75 off 53 in a one day match for Surrey on Sunday - he looks like he was in good nick in the short form. I reckon Rilee Rossouw, Davids or De Kock will replace Smith..

  • Robster1 on May 8, 2013, 22:48 GMT

    In SA it's been constantly thought that Smith's body was not up to the rigours of county cricket and he should simply play for SA and in the IPL. No surprise then that he's had to return home to Cape Town. Don't expect to see him in Surrey colours again. A call up then for Kallis for the Champions Trophy.

  • Sakthiivel on May 8, 2013, 21:22 GMT

    Faf or Miller can do the job .,

  • Cpt.Meanster on May 8, 2013, 20:54 GMT

    He shouldn't be focusing on useless county cricket. He needs to make sure he plays long for SA in all formats. County cricket is fine if SA were to tour England to get some practice under the belt. Get well soon Biff.

  • on May 8, 2013, 20:06 GMT

    Its NOT a blessing in disguise. Ask any opposition, they would love not to face smith, he is experienced and have special ability to score runs when team needs most. Anyway if smith cant play saf should pick henry davids rather than de-kock. Another option can be picking a middle order batsmen and let de-plesis open.

  • Jda123 on May 8, 2013, 19:44 GMT

    I think this is a blessing in disguise for SA.

  • SurlyCynic on May 8, 2013, 19:31 GMT

    I would open with Faf and De Kock in ODIs, Amla 3, Smith should stick to tests now.

  • Cyril_Knight on May 8, 2013, 19:15 GMT

    I bet the other counties are laughing! But what a shame that one of the very best batsmen in the world shall not be gracing the circuit for the rest of the summer.

    I've watched every ball of Surrey's season so far and there were obvious improvements to last season: volume in the field, care of the ball, innovative field placing, to name three. Without Smith I think Surrey may well of lost one of the three Championship matches so far despite his own low scores.

    Gutted is an understatement!

  • shovwar on May 8, 2013, 19:12 GMT

    Its time for D Cock to shine in the openning slot.

  • sachin_vvsfan on May 8, 2013, 18:21 GMT

    Blessing in disguise? opportunity to find another Miller / Faf

  • 2nd_Slip on May 8, 2013, 18:01 GMT

    I'm very sorry for Graeme .I'm sure he would have loved to impart some of his great skill and talent to help develop county cricket. With regards to the champions trophy though, I think just like Boucher's injury last year before the test series against the Poms this could be a blessing in disguise. Just like Boucher,Smith hasn't been at his best yet the selectors have been reluctant to drop him in the ODI squad. Will be interesting to see who will replace him. They will probably choose de Kock but I'm keeping my fingers crossed that they pick Henry Davids, because he is more experienced, mature, cool and calm under pressure.

  • Abhi1230 on May 8, 2013, 17:30 GMT

    Unfortunate would love to see him in SA squad lifting WC 2015.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • Abhi1230 on May 8, 2013, 17:30 GMT

    Unfortunate would love to see him in SA squad lifting WC 2015.

  • 2nd_Slip on May 8, 2013, 18:01 GMT

    I'm very sorry for Graeme .I'm sure he would have loved to impart some of his great skill and talent to help develop county cricket. With regards to the champions trophy though, I think just like Boucher's injury last year before the test series against the Poms this could be a blessing in disguise. Just like Boucher,Smith hasn't been at his best yet the selectors have been reluctant to drop him in the ODI squad. Will be interesting to see who will replace him. They will probably choose de Kock but I'm keeping my fingers crossed that they pick Henry Davids, because he is more experienced, mature, cool and calm under pressure.

  • sachin_vvsfan on May 8, 2013, 18:21 GMT

    Blessing in disguise? opportunity to find another Miller / Faf

  • shovwar on May 8, 2013, 19:12 GMT

    Its time for D Cock to shine in the openning slot.

  • Cyril_Knight on May 8, 2013, 19:15 GMT

    I bet the other counties are laughing! But what a shame that one of the very best batsmen in the world shall not be gracing the circuit for the rest of the summer.

    I've watched every ball of Surrey's season so far and there were obvious improvements to last season: volume in the field, care of the ball, innovative field placing, to name three. Without Smith I think Surrey may well of lost one of the three Championship matches so far despite his own low scores.

    Gutted is an understatement!

  • SurlyCynic on May 8, 2013, 19:31 GMT

    I would open with Faf and De Kock in ODIs, Amla 3, Smith should stick to tests now.

  • Jda123 on May 8, 2013, 19:44 GMT

    I think this is a blessing in disguise for SA.

  • on May 8, 2013, 20:06 GMT

    Its NOT a blessing in disguise. Ask any opposition, they would love not to face smith, he is experienced and have special ability to score runs when team needs most. Anyway if smith cant play saf should pick henry davids rather than de-kock. Another option can be picking a middle order batsmen and let de-plesis open.

  • Cpt.Meanster on May 8, 2013, 20:54 GMT

    He shouldn't be focusing on useless county cricket. He needs to make sure he plays long for SA in all formats. County cricket is fine if SA were to tour England to get some practice under the belt. Get well soon Biff.

  • Sakthiivel on May 8, 2013, 21:22 GMT

    Faf or Miller can do the job .,