18 hours ago
Bailey's Tour Is Over
Australia have confirmed that Phil Bailey will miss the rest of the Ashes series against Great Britain after sustaining two fractures in his eye socket.
The 23-year-old Cronulla Sharks player picked up the injury in the last play of Australia's first Test win after accidentally colliding with one of his own team-mates.
He was taken to hospital after the match at Wigan and scans revealed the Australians' worst fears.
Team manager Gerard Raper said: "Phil has got a couple of fractures and the doctors are going to decide in the next few days on whether they are going to operate but he won't be taking any further part in the Tests."
The loss of Bailey, who scored Australia's first try at Wigan, takes to seven the number of centres unavailable to coach Chris Anderson, who plans to name his team for the second Test on Tuesday.
Five recognised centres were ruled out of the tour through injury and Ryan Girdler will return home on Monday after suffering a recurrence of a calf strain in the Kangaroos' win over Wales earlier this month.
"It's unfortunate for Ryan," said Raper. "He was certainly keen to play a part in the Tests and he's obviously very disappointed but that's rugby league."
Darren Smith has been called up as cover for Bailey, and admitted his "utter surprise" at the call.
Smith, who won the last of his six caps four years ago, was a visitor to the Kangaroo training camp last week and Raper admitted the player's immediate availability was a factor in their choice of a replacement.
"The guys back home will not have been in intense training at this time of the year and, if we had to fly someone in from overseas, it would take them until Wednesday or Thursday to get here and he would only have a day to prepare," said Raper.
"We needed to act fairly quickly to get in a replacement and Darren has been over here and he's acclimatised to the conditions.
"He was our choice and we put it through our chairman Colin Love and the rest of the selectors and they were pretty pleased to have Darren come into camp. It's been a bonus for us having him here.
"He's coming as a utility. Chris will have the option of whether to play him in tight or out wide so it leaves a bit of scope. gives us a bit more strength in both positions."
Smith made his Test debut as a Brisbane Broncos player in 1998 and last appeared for his country in Australia's 22-20 victory over New Zealand in the Tri-Nations Series Cup final in Auckland four years ago.
His only previous appearance against Great Britain came earlier in that tournament when he helped the Aussies to a 42-6 victory in Brisbane.
Although Smith played largely for St Helens in the back row, four of his six previous appearances for Australia were at centre.
"I never imagined this kind of thing would happen," he said on joining up with his fellow countrymen. "I'm very excited and very nervous about being part of it. It's a bit unreal at the moment.
"I was going home to Australia at the end of the month and was just going to play some local footie in the local comp in Brisbane.
"But I've been training with a few of the young guys at Saints and doing a bit more by myself to keep pretty fit in the off season."