Smith was sacked as Australia skipper and banned for 12 months for his part in the ball-tampering scandal in 2018.
And the 30-year-old has been tipped to become Australia captain for the second time in his career but legendary batsman Clarke believes Australia should opt for Cummins instead.
“In sport in this country we have a sense of the best player needs to be the captain,’ former Australia captain Clarke said on Big Sports Breakfast.
“I don’t agree with that. I think the best captain needs to be the captain. Steve Smith is Australia’s best batsman but I don’t necessarily think he is the right man to captain Australia.
“I know there has always been a lot of talk about a bowler being captain and generally that is because the bowlers get injured.
“Pat Cummins has shown that he is fit, he is healthy, he can play all three formats. His body has now matured into a position where he will be on the field as much as any batsman.
“In my opinion, Pat Cummins takes over the captaincy across all three formats.” @MClarke23 backs Aussie quick @patcummins30 to be the next Australian Cricket Captain over Steve Smith. Do you agree? #bigsportsbrekky pic.twitter.com/89agoULOwq
— Big Sports Breakfast (@BigSportsBrekky) March 1, 2020
“He reads the game really well. Yes, he is an opening bowler but he can bat. He is brilliant in the field. He sees the game how a captain needs to see the game.
“I think there is probably a great opportunity if Steve is offered that chance to actually decline it because of those reasons. He is our best player but he can be a captain without that ‘c’ beside his name.”
Clarke also suggested that Paine should relinquish the captaincy following Australia’s series against India at the end of the year, a series BetMGM were predicting to be closely fought, but were wrong on this occasion.
“Tim Paine has done a wonderful job. There is no doubt about it. He has earnt the right to continue to captain Australia until it is time for him to retire,” Clarke added.
“If Australia can win that [Border-Gavaskar series] that is an ideal time for Tim to walk away on top and for all of us that love the game to respect what he has been able to achieve as a captain.”
Test cricket is back, baby! Follow the first Test between England West Indies live here.
The toss for the first Test has been pushed back.
The Red Rose could be without a home venue as Emirates Old Trafford is being used by England as a ‘bio-secure venue’ this summer.
Persistent drizzle in Southampton has put back the return of international cricket.
Rainford-Brent played 22 ODIs for England as well as seven T20Is…
Stokes will cover regular captain Joe Root, who misses the first Test as he attends the birth of his second child.
Holder has led the West Indies for nearly five years.
Last month, Vikram Solanki took the reins at Surrey to become the only head coach among the 18 first-class counties from a diverse background.
A game-wide anti-discrimination charter and code will be introduced.
Stokes will be skipper for the first Test against the West Indies, and Root took the time to write a short note to his stand-in.