Dark clouds were looming over Steve Smith's participation in the first Test matches against India as he walked off from Australia's recent practice session due to a sore back. However, Aussie skipper Tim Paine cleared the firm and confirmed that the top-ranked Test batsman would take the field in the Pink Ball Test. Paine even asserted that the former Aussie skipper has been batting regularly in nets since the last week and the one-day off might well rejuvenate him. India vs Australia 1st Test 2020 Preview.

"His (Smith's) preparation has been very good. He's batted for the last week since we've been in Adelaide. So for him to have a day off might actually be a blessing in disguise," Paine said on the eve of the opening Test. IND vs AUS Dream11 Team Prediction: Tips to Pick Best Fantasy Playing XI.

"He's had a stiff back before. Yesterday was more precautionary. He's in to train today, so we'll see how he goes. But come tomorrow, whether he's fit and sore in the back, or stiff in the back, I think he normally gets up, gets through it and finds a way to score runs like he always does," he added.

Notably, the hosts were already dented by multiple injury concerns by the time Smith felt some issues in his back. Veteran opener David Warner has been ruled out of the first Test due to hamstring injury while youngster Will Pucovski is out of the opening game due to concussion.

All-rounder Cameron Green – who also sustained a concussion in the practice game – also had to pass the fitness Test to make a potential Test debut. However, Paine said that the youngster is 'good to go.' "He trained really well with us yesterday, and the reports are he's pulled up really well this morning, so all things going well Cam Green will make his Test debut tomorrow," Paine opined.

The 36-year-old even indicated that the team management would back out-of-form opener Joe Burns for the first Test with Warner and Pucovski out.

"Obviously his build-up, in terms of runs, hasn't been great but if you look at the work he's done solely in Test cricket for this team, it's been very, very good. He averages just over 40 in Test cricket. If Joe walks out to bat tomorrow, we've got full confidence in him doing the job, there's no doubt about that," Paine concluded.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Dec 16, 2020 08:53 AM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).