Cricket

Steve Smith, David Warner’s form in T20 leagues key to World Cup selection, says Cricket Australia

Cricket Australia's CEO Kevin Roberts in a press conference

Cricket Australia's CEO Kevin Roberts in a press conference   | Photo Credit: AFP

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Cricket Australia CEO Kevin Roberts on Friday said that Steve Smith and David Warner’s performances in the upcoming T20 leagues around the world will play a vital role in deciding the banned duo’s selection for next year’s World Cup

Both Smith and Warner will be competing in the Bangladesh Premier League followed by the Indian Premier League in the coming year. Roberts said CA will keep a close eye on their forms in the T20 events.

“We’ll obviously take their form in those tournaments into account, so that will be important to watch,” Roberts was quoted as saying by ABC Radio.

“There’s got to be consistency, fairness and justice in our selection criteria and so that’s our focus on making the road as smooth as possible,” he said.

Smith and Warner were handed year-long bans by CA for their role in the infamous ball-tampering scandal in South Africa in March. While serving his one-year ban, Smith has participated in several T20 competitions, including in Canada and the Caribbean, in a bid to get match time.

Also Read: Why this hysteria over ball-tampering?

“From what I hear around the traps, there’s no concerns with the form of Steve and Dave, so it’s just a matter of that continuing out in the middle as opposed to in the nets, and us assessing that, and communicating with them as frequently as possible over these next few months” Roberts said.

In recent interviews both Smith, Australia’s skipper during that match, and Cameron Bancroft, the player caught on camera committing the act, made it clear that the then vice-captain Warner was the instigator of the ill-fated incident in Cape Town. Their statements have received severe criticism from former Australian players and officials.

Also Read: Bancroft says Warner encouraged him to tamper with the ball

But Roberts denied that the players’ statements would affect their chances of being brought back into the Australian fold.

“I don’t really know. But I think what’s important is our commitment to that integration process, working with the three sanctioned players, making sure that we’ve got selection criteria that are the same for all players, whether they are the sanctioned players or not,” the CA Chief said.

Roberts also commended Warner for handling the situation with maturity.

“I spoke to Dave on Christmas Eve, or just prior to Christmas, but having spoken to him since the interviews I think Dave’s to be commended for his maturity and the way that he’s handling the situation at the moment. And of course our approach is the same with all three players,” he added.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 12:18:16 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/steve-smith-david-warners-form-in-t20-leagues-key-to-world-cup-selection-says-cricket-australia/article25850395.ece

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