Former Australia captain Daniel Strauss, 34, was expected to be fit to face Afghanistan at Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Tuesday for the World Cup. Smith’s vertigo heightens Australia’s concerns for the World Cup. However, he appeared to experience additional discomfort after batting during net practice on Monday and was observed seated with his head bowed beneath a canopy on the outfield.
“I’ve been experiencing some vertigo symptoms for the past day or so, so it’s been a little annoying,” Smith explained to reporters just before the training session.
“Occasionally, I’ve had a few episodes, so I can tell you it’s not the funniest space to be in, but yeah, I’ll go out and have a hit and hopefully be OK, and we’ll see how we go,” said the actor.
Should Smith be granted the all-clear, Australia would have fifteen members of their squad available, as Mitchell Marsh has returned to India after his grandfather’s demise.
Glenn Maxwell, an all-rounder with whom Marsh is paired, is again in contention after bizarrely missing the last match against England by sustaining a concussion while collapsing from a golf buggy.
Smith has performed poorly at the World Cup, accumulating 205 runs at an average of less than 30 over seven innings.
However, he continues to be one of Australia’s most effective slow bowlers. This quality was crucial in facing an Afghanistan attack that was led by World Cup-performing spinners Rashid Khan, Mujeeb ur Rahman, and Mohammad Nabi.
Afghanistan, who had only one victory in their previous two World Cup appearances (against non-Test nation Scotland), has been one of the surprises in India, having defeated incumbent champions England, 1992 champions Pakistan, and 1996 kings Sri Lanka.
Five-time victorious Australia must prevail in one of their remaining two group matches—confrontations with Afghanistan and Bangladesh—to advance to the semifinals.
“They (Afghanistan) have won some key moments in games against some good teams and their spinners are a big threat, they’re quality bowlers, and they’ve got some batters, particularly at the top of the order that is taking the game on, and can take it away from you,” according to Smith.
“Over the past five or six years, I believe they’ve made significant progress and are a positive side. One must perform admirably to defeat this formidable opponent.