Grame Smith, who took a running catch on Monday night to dismiss Virender Sehwag, ended up fracturing the middle finger in his right hand. As a result, he is set to sit out of the IPL.
“Smith is going back to South Africa to see a finger specialist and we will re-evaluate once we get the results,” said Rajasthan Royals’ chief executive officer Sean Morris. According to team sources, Smith has been advised six weeks’ rest and this means he will miss the rest of the tournament.
Smith has suffered due to his wonky little finger over the past year. The South Africa skipper was forced to return home after he hurt the finger during a fielding drill before the Kolkata Test last month. The freak incident also forced him to skip the three-match ODI series against India.
Damien Martyn is likely to replace Smith. Asked if the Royals would look for a replacement, Morris said, “Not at this stage. We will review our options in the next 24 hours. We have quality players to fill the space and if we fill it, we need to look outside for options. We will take that decision with the captain and the coach.”
Not only Smith, injury concerns have cast a shadow on Royals’ seamer Dmitri Mascarenhas and all-rounder Yusuf Pathan. Mascarenhas twisted his ankle while being run out, but still came out to bowl. “He (Mascarenhas) was limping, though he could hardly walk. He showed a lot of courage to come out and bowl,” skipper Shane Warne said after the match, adding “Yusuf might’ve popped something in his shoulder and injuries to three pretty big players, it can’t get much worse than that.”