Hand over the captaincy, Smitty

James Maxwell Roar Rookie

By James Maxwell, James Maxwell is a Roar Rookie

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16 Have your say

    It’s time for Steve Smith to hand over the T20 captaincy for the betterment of his country.

    Smith needs to make the big call and give the T20 captaincy to David Warner. In the current T20 series being played, the Australian side looks like a group of ‘Energiser bunnies’.

    Frome the naked eye, the players look far more interested than they did in the one-day series.

    Although, there could be a number of reasons for this such as the fact it’s 30 fewer overs in the field? Were the players exhausted after the Ashes?

    In reality, none of that can be used as an excuse.

    The players are paid copious amounts of money to perform for their country on a consistent basis, end of story.

    Australia's David Warner and Steve Smith


    Warner is an aggressive player, which is showing in his captaincy.

    He sets aggressive fields, backs his bowlers and gives freedom to the players, which is what they need in T20 cricket.

    Smith says he wants to captain all three formats of the game, but his commitment to T20 cricket shows he really doesn’t want to.

    Smith is currently resting from the T20 tri-series due to exhaustion after the one-day and Ashes series, which is understandable.

    But, he just signed a $2.4-million deal in the IPL, which will take place during Cricket Australia’s official leave period the players receive.

    What that shows is Smith will take a big pay over receiving a well-earned break from cricket.

    As harsh as that is, it is the truth.

    It’s obvious that any human in this situation being offered 2.4 million to play cricket would take the offer every day of the week.

    But that is why he needs to hand the captaincy over to Warner.

    Warner is committed to the format and wants to represent his country.

    At least Warner has played all three series as well as committing to the IPL, something Smith could have done.

    There is nothing wrong with Smith captaining two formats; if it makes the T20 side stronger he needs to sacrifice it to Warner.

    Smith needs to make a call on his commitment to his country and lead by example before someone swings the axe on him.

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    The Crowd Says (16)

    • February 21st 2018 @ 7:19am
      Marcus said | February 21st 2018 @ 7:19am | ! Report

      Agree Smith needs to hand over the T20i captaincy. The next question is would he actually make the T20i team?
      Finch has moved into the role Smith would play and is doing it better.

      What would a full strength T20i team look like, who in the test team would make it?

      • Roar Guru

        February 21st 2018 @ 9:31am
        JamesH said | February 21st 2018 @ 9:31am | ! Report

        Good questions, Marcus. If we assume that we need Stoinis’ (or M Marsh’s) bowling then the only guys who could really make way for Smith are Lynn and Short, and Smith doesn’t play the roles that they are playing. Does dropping Short, moving Lynn or Finch up to open and putting Smith in the middle order make the team stronger?

        The difficulty is that Smith’s record is good enough to warrant a spot in the side, particularly if he has another decent IPL. It’s a good problem to have though.

        • February 21st 2018 @ 9:57am
          jameswm said | February 21st 2018 @ 9:57am | ! Report

          I don’t watch the IPL. Does Smith do well there?

          It is hard to fit him in. Maxwell is very good around the 5-6 role, Finch at 4, Warner, Short and Lynn in the top 3. Stoinis or Marsh around 5-6 as well, Carey at 7, Agar at 8 and 3 quicks.

          It is tough to fit him in and in that side, it’s Finch or Smith at 4.

          • Roar Guru

            February 21st 2018 @ 1:05pm
            The Bush said | February 21st 2018 @ 1:05pm | ! Report

            Smith’s a gun in the IPL, his stats support that. As does the gigantic pay cheque he’s receiving.

    • February 21st 2018 @ 10:36am
      Ouch said | February 21st 2018 @ 10:36am | ! Report

      Agree. The Oz T20 team is the best it has been at present.

      Probably a bit galling for the Australian Test captain and best test batsman in the world, but he has to earn his spot in this side.

    • February 21st 2018 @ 11:09am
      Paul said | February 21st 2018 @ 11:09am | ! Report

      James, your point that Smith should give up the T20 captaincy is quite correct but the logic you use to justify that comment is mystifying.

      You use the reasoning that because players get paid a lot of money, they can’t be exhausted from playing in an Ashes series then transitioning to ODIs. That makes no sense. The “facts” were Australia was not mentally ready to play ODIs after the Test series, given the bulk of the team came out of the Tests, they chose players who were clearly out of form (eg Warner and Smith plus a few quicks) and they played against an extremely aggressive England side that they were not prepared for. None of that has any thing to do with money.

      You then attack Smith again for taking up an IPL contract when he should be “having a well earned rest”. First of all, what has that got to do with his ability to captain the T20 side? The other point is simple as well; he plays 8 games in 8 weeks. I’m sorry but that’s not hard work for guys at this level. He then goes to England to play some ODI’s in June where he will hopefully bat better because of his IPL stint.

      The reasoning you should have used is Warner has a better record as a T20 captain and the side responds to his leadership. That’s a fact.

      • February 21st 2018 @ 12:06pm
        Brendon said | February 21st 2018 @ 12:06pm | ! Report

        You’re right Paul. I’m also confused by the logic that by choosing to take part in the premier t20 competition in the world instead of resting, he is not committed to the t20 format.

        I agree that he should have to force his way back in to this side now that they are playing well and winning. Same goes for the likes of Starc, Cummins, Hazlewood and Paine for that matter – this current lineup looks pretty spot on.

      • Roar Guru

        February 21st 2018 @ 1:08pm
        The Bush said | February 21st 2018 @ 1:08pm | ! Report

        I don’t think that’s right Paul. The author reasoning is sound; if you want to captain in all three formats, then you need to be available to play all possible internationals. Cricket Australia has provided a break period for them, but instead of taking it up, he’s playing IPL. As he did last year. No wonder he’s exhausted, he hasn’t had a break, but that was his choice to make (as it is again this year).

        The author concedes that most would make the same decision – who would turn down that money? But that means he needs to make professional sacrifices elsewhere; in this case he should give up the T20 captaincy.

      • Roar Pro

        February 21st 2018 @ 8:29pm
        Adam Hayward said | February 21st 2018 @ 8:29pm | ! Report

        What absolute garbage excuses for the ODI team not being successful. They simply weren’t good enough and that’s that. They’ve lost 11 of their past 13 matches. Not good enough.

        Look at a player like ‘King Kohli’. He’s a player we all love to hate, but he plays everything. He has the drive and desire than most other players in the world and despite the fact he plays all 3 formats formats at all times, including the IPL, he doesn’t look to be slowing down.

    • February 21st 2018 @ 11:58am
      Bob Sims said | February 21st 2018 @ 11:58am | ! Report

      Smith should now have to force his way into the T20 side just like any other player. The side is looking better than it ever has because of two things. The first is undoubtedly Warner’s captaincy and the second is that for the first time the side was chosen from in-form players in that format. Forget about the captaincy issue – there is simply no room for Smith in the side at all at present.

      • February 21st 2018 @ 12:30pm
        Paul said | February 21st 2018 @ 12:30pm | ! Report

        agreed, he’d need to make a stack of runs in this format to get back into the national team, which is why the IPL stint might just help him

    • February 21st 2018 @ 12:40pm
      DaveJ said | February 21st 2018 @ 12:40pm | ! Report

      Seems unfounded to suggest a partly different group of players is doing better at T20s compared to 50 overs simply because the captain is different. Might it not be the players and the format, rather than leadership or tactics? E.g. Glenn Maxwell in the team rather than C White? Lynn vs Head? Etc. Warner himself firing for the first time in several games, in Auckland? The bowlers were obviously a bit weary, mentally and physically, after the Ashes campaign, which now squeezes five Tests into 6 week’s – in the old days it was over 3 months. And Zampa was completely non-threatening. There’s no point making an issue of the captaincy unless Smith doesn’t make the team – which seems to be a question mark, though I haven’t seen him in the IPL lately. As for talking about “the betterment of Australia” – I wouldn’t get too fussed: the main game should be winning Test series and the World Cup. No one remember who wins T20 tournaments – at least not yet.

      • February 21st 2018 @ 2:10pm
        KenW said | February 21st 2018 @ 2:10pm | ! Report

        Agreed with everything you wrote DaveJ. Warner has done a good job as captain (although his team did concede 240-odd runs in 20 overs the other day), but there’s no particular reason to dump the old captain – unless of course he’s not considered a first-choice selection.

    • February 21st 2018 @ 2:53pm
      vrx said | February 21st 2018 @ 2:53pm | ! Report

      Given Smith’s sublime performances in the last IPL, it is not for the ‘betterment’ of Australia to strip his captaincy and prematurely disregard him from the T20I team. Currently we have numerous candidates for the batting line-up, which is a nice problem to have. It would be amazing for Australia to win the next T20 World Cup and Smith is in the mix.

      Let’s wait and see how Short, Lynn, Maxwell, Finch and Smith performs in the IPL this year before we decide to move him on.

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