In the recently held Cricket Australia awards night, Steve Smith was named the ICC Test player of the Year and was also awarded the prestigious Allan Border Medal. David Warner, on the other hand, received the ODI player of the Year award. Speaking about how both the Australia players are faring, Warner said that he didn’t want to take up Smith’s T20 captaincy.
Currently, Australia are competing with England and New Zealand in a T20 International tri-series. Australia have won all their 3 matches quite comfortably till now and the man who is leading them on the ground is none other than Australia’s highest run-scorer in the shortest format David Warner. Steven Smith who is the sides regular captain has been given some time-off by the board in order to prepare for upcoming Australia’s tour to South Africa.
David Warner, who has 12 international T20 half-centuries to his name, spoke on the eve of Australia’s 4th T20 against New Zealand and cleared the air surrounding the question of captaincy in T20 Internationals. The 31-year-old has enjoyed a lot of success leading the side in T20 internationals, however, he is clear that he will not be trying to steal the captaincy from Steve Smith, rather the Allan Border Medal awardee needs to decide for himself whether he wants to continue leading the national side in T20 International.
This is not the first T20 series Steve Smith has missed over the past couple of years, in fact, his last T20 appearance was in the 2016 World T20. Since the mega event in India, Australia have played 10 T20 Internationals in which they have won 7 and lost just 3.
Speaking to Cricket Australia, Warner clarified his stance regarding the T20 captaincy. He said, “That’s obviously a question for Smithy and the selectors. It depends on how Smithy is going mentally with all three forms.”
Many ex-cricketers have voiced their concerns over one man leading across three-formats including the great Ricky Ponting. However, Steve Smith is determined to hold on to the captaincy role, even though he has featured in the format for some time. Under Warner, the Australian team has actually done brilliantly, he has led them to 6 victories in the 7 matches he has captained and will see his team rise to number 2 world ranking if they beat New Zealand on Friday.
Speaking further about the difficulties of leading the side in all three-formats and his support for Steve Smith, David Warner said, “He’s said that he’s happy doing all three forms and I respect that. I’m his deputy so I try and help him as much as I can so he’s in the (right) frame of mind.”
“But it’s quite a tough job. It’s not just the cricket he has to deal with, it’s everything else that comes with the game. I don’t think people see that as often and it can be quite challenging.”
“I try and do as much as I can and make sure I’m doing everything right with the boys to make his job a lot easier.”