With the 11th edition of Indian Premier League (IPL) is just around the corner, Sunrisers Hyderabad mentor VVS Laxman has said that the fate of David Warner in IPL 2018 will depend on Cricket Australia’s decision on the opening batsman, who finds himself entangled in the ball-tampering scandal.
Steve Smith and Warner had stepped down as Australia's captain and vice-captain for the remainder of the third Test following a ball-tampering controversy that rocked the entire cricketing fraternity on the third day of the third Test against South Africa in Cape Town.
“It’s very unfortunate what has happened in the Cape Town Test. As far as Sunrisers is concerned, it’s too early for us to comment. Because it just happened day before yesterday. We will wait for decision of Cricket Australia,” Laxman quoted by PTI as saying.
Smith, who was suspended by ICC for one Test besides being fined 100 percent of his match fee following his admission to involve in ball-tampering, stood down as Rajasthan Royals’ captain on Monday (March 26).
When asked if there is an alternative plan in the event of any strict action against Warner, Laxman said: “The information available at the moment is very limited. So, we will wait for further information. If at all, the need be, then we will discuss about that. As far as Warner is concerned, he has been an exceptional leader for Sunrisers group.”
The much-awaited 11th edition of IPL will kick off from March 7. Sunrisers Hyderabad, the champions of IPL 2016, will start their campaign against Rajasthan Royals on April 9 while they will commence their final leg of preparation from March 30.
“It’s not very often where you are in that position where you plan and you target certain players and you get those players in the auction. We are very pleased with the way the auction went. Especially, we are happy with the way we got the domestic players,” Laxman said.
“Because, over the last few years, that’s one area where unfortunately Sunrisers hasn’t been able to do well. We expect a lot from our domestic talent and they were, unfortunately, not been able to play to their potential. So, it was important for us to have a strong Indian players this time. We are happy that we got a lot of them,” he explained.
Besides the marquee players such as Warner, Shikhar Dhawan, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Kane Williamson, SRH will have the services of new players like Wriddhiman Saha, Shakib Al Hasan and Yusuf Pathan in this season of IPL.
“Williamson is a leader within the group and he is a fantastic player who keeps improving in every aspect of his game. I think what was important for us is to retain the majority of players who form the core group of Sunrisers family and Kane is definitely a part of that core group,” Laxman said.
“With seven overseas players, we got the luxury of playing various combinations and that’s something which was intentional and conscious effort from us when we went into the auction,” he concluded.