Former Aussie captain, Steve Smith was banned for a year due to the ball-tampering scandal in Cape Town in 2018. He returned to international cricket with a vengeance, but his captaincy was also banned for two years. Steve Smith wants to return as national team captain after the ban has been lifted recently.
The 31-year-old returned to Test cricket after 18 months and scored two centuries in the first Ashes Test at Edgbaston in 2019, and is currently one of Australia’s important players in the squad. Wicketkeeper-batsman Tim Paine is currently leading the Australian Test team and Aaron Finch is leading the team in the colorful jersey.
As a result of the sandpaper incident, Tim Paine took charge of the Test team. He built up a nice partnership with Coach Justin Langer and retained the Ashes. But now Paine is 36 years old and has lost 2 consecutive Test series at home to India, questions are now being raised about his Test captaincy. However, Paine has not yet commented on whether he will step down after this year’s Ashes.
Australia will play the Ashes at home later this year. Before that, the T20 World Cup is going to be held in India. In an interview with the media on Monday, one of the best batsmen of the time Steve Smith said, “I am ready to take the opportunity to lead Australia again. If Cricket Australia thinks this is the best time to give me the responsibility, then I have no problem. I’m interested.”
Fast bowler Pat Cummins is currently Australia’s vice-captain and has also expressed interest in the captaincy. However, Cricket Australia is still reluctant to hand over the captaincy to the bowlers as per their old tradition. The last time Australia was captained by a fast bowler, Ray Lindwall in a Test in India, was in 1956.
However, Cricket Australia did not give a clear indication of whether they are still thinking about Smith’s captaincy or not. But Australian coach Justin Langer said of Smith’s wishes, “We have two great captains. Ashes and the T20 World Cup are ahead. Australia captain Tim Paine and Captain Aaron Finch are doing very well in Test cricket white-ball cricket respectively. So no matter what the media says, there is no vacancy for the captain.”
Smith recognized that he would always have to live with the black marks of his misdeeds. But he said that has learned a lot from his experience, “I will always live with the memory of Cape Town whether I lead or not. It will always be with me. Time moves forward very fast and I have learned a lot about myself and humanity over the last few years.”
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