Indian Premier League (IPL) side Rising Pune Supergiants have had a wretched time in their first IPL season so far, not only losing matches but also seeing their players picking up injuries. Their campaign took another turn for the worse on May 2 when it was confirmed that Steven Smith will miss the rest of the tournament due to a wrist injury.
The batsman is the fourth Pune overseas player to be ruled out of the tournament following Kevin Pietersen (calf), Faf du Plessis (broken finger) and Mitchell Marsh (side strain), with the Australian captain set to return home for further assessment and treatment.
Cricket Australia confirmed Smith's unavailability with Alex Kountouris, their sports science and sports medicine manager saying: "Steve has been struggling with pain in his right wrist for the last week during his stint in the IPL. We have been working with his IPL franchise Pune to monitor this and unfortunately it has not resolved, as such he will return home from India for further assessment and treatment ahead of the tour of the West Indies."
"From the information we have so far, this doesn't appear to be a serious injury but we are keen to give him the time to recover and rehabilitate before heading to the West Indies at the end of May."
Smith has been in brilliant form in the ongoing competition, scoring 270 runs in eight matches at an average of 45 and a strike rate of 153.40. He in fact scored his first T20 ton when he smashed a 54-ball 101 runs against the Gujarat Lions on 29 April.
The Pune outfit have to win all their remaining fixtures if they have any chance of making it to the knock-out stages of the competition and Smith's absence will make it much more difficult for them.
Australia will be hoping that Smith's injury is not too serious as they are scheduled to travel to the West Indies for a triangular series featuring South Africa which is scheduled to start on 3 June.