AUS v IND 2020-21: CA chairman speaks on Steve Smith's potential return to captaincy

Smith has overcome a two-year leadership ban and is eligible to captain Australia again.

Steve Smith | GettyCricket Australia (CA) chairman Earl Eddings talked about premier batsman Steve Smith's potential return to captaincy post in the future. 

Smith is now eligible to captain Australia again after enduring a two-year leadership ban following his role in the 2018 ball-tampering scandal.

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The 31-year-old had returned to international cricket last year and has been doing well for the side too, but Eddings said he isn't the only name they would have under consideration whenever Aaron Finch (white-ball skipper) and Tim Paine (Test captain) decide to move forward. 

"First of all, we've got three great captains in Meg (Lanning, women's team leader), Aaron and Tim. We've got some great young leaders coming through. So it's not just about should Steve take over, it's about what's best overall," ESPNcrcinfo quoted Eddings as saying.

Under Smith, Australia had regained the Ashes from England in the 2017-18 home summer but he was sacked soon afterwards as the team was caught trying to alter the condition of the ball in the infamous Cape Town Test at the behest of their leader. 

In recent times, Australia have identified Travis Head, Pat Cummins, who is now the sole vice-captain across formats, and Matthew Wade as leadership candidates, with both Paine and Finch not getting younger and approaching the back end of their careers. Eddings, however, said there haven't been any specific discussions on the matter.

"Steve's a great young man and he was a good captain when he was there. Like any succession, there's planning in place. Have we sat down as a board specifically to discuss the next captain? No, we haven't," said Eddings.

"But I think over a period of time we've given a range of people options to be vice-captain, Matthew Wade was already vice-captain, so we're seeing that and it gives us an opportunity to look at the future leaders of Australian cricket," he added.

Smith recently said he is "comfortable" where he stands and is willing to do whatever is best for the team. The right-hand batsman, whose form will be key to Australia possibly reclaiming the Border-Gavaskar Trophy from the Indians this season, also has a great sense of respect for both the existing captains. 

Smith was all praise for Paine, who isn't always regarded highly for his batting but played a vital knock in the victory in the first Test in Adelaide. 

"He will take a lot of confidence from his game the other day. He took the games on and was scoring on good rate and that changes the momentum there," said Smith during a virtual press conference on Tuesday (December 22)

"We have always known, Tim had such a good ability with the bat and he is getting better. That's also part of his job, a wicket-keeper at number seven taking the game on and playing according to the situation," he added.

The next Test of the four-match series will be played in Melbourne from December 26. 

(Inputs from ANI)


By Kashish Chadha - 22 Dec, 2020

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