Why Shane Warne thinks Cricket Australia have opened themselves up to ridicule
Australia legend Shane Warne has slammed the decision to appoint Steve Smith as the country’s Test vice-captain.
Smith was removed from the captaincy in the wake of the laughable sandpaper ball-tampering incident in their ill-tempered series against South Africa.
That incident has seen Smith labelled, perhaps unfairly as cheat, and while Warne feels that the former skipper was harshly dealt with for his part in the scandal, he does not support his restoration to a leadership role.
It comes just as the man who replaced Smith as captain has been taken down by another scandal which might have given Cricket Australia some pause before appointing a man who led Australian cricket into a cultural review.
Wrong to restore Smith to Australia leadership
Fast bowler Pat Cummins was appointed skipper becoming the first quick to lead Australia in the Ashes in over 50 years but the desire to bring Smith back into the leadership fold sends the wrong message according to Warne.
“We all love Steve Smith and are proud that he’s the best Test batsmen in the world again, but he should not be the Australian vice-captain.” Warne wrote in his column for the Herald Sun on Saturday.
“Everyone makes mistakes, we know that, and we’ve all moved on from sandpaper-gate. But that happened under Steve Smith’s captaincy; he allowed that to happen on his watch. I think the punishment he was given was way too severe, which I said at the time. He paid a huge price for his mistake.”
“But his second chance is getting to play for Australia again and in my opinion announcing him as vice-captain opens up CA (Cricket Australia) for ridicule and criticism, and they should throw the code of conduct out the window,” added Warne.
Australian cricket has been plunged into another leadership crisis, and this time it appears to have shunted the character of everyone involved in the game down under into the limelight.
Any suggestion of Australia maintaining some sort of high ground over an England team heading into the series with their own game reeling from a racism scandal has long been put to bed.
The Ashes promises to be an intense cauldron that will Test player’s in every aspect, and we are highly likely to encounter further controversy.
South Africa vs India: ‘We played close to the perfect game’ – Bavuma
South Africa beat India by 31 runs.
Women’s Ashes: England captain Heather Knight wants ‘really aggressive’ start
The the multi-format series gets under way with the first of three Twenty20 matches on Thursday.
T20 World Cup
England exclusive: Phil Salt focusing on the fundamentals in T20 World Cup bid
Phil Salt wants to be in the T20 World Cup squad in Australia.
Ottis Gibson announced as Yorkshire CCC head coach on three-year deal
Ottis Gibson comes into the troubled county.
New Zealand visit to Australia put on hold due to border controls
Quarantine periods have proven a dealbreaker.
First ODI: South Africa vs India – Live scoreboard
Follow SouthAfrica vs India.
Ashes failure: Eoin Morgan says Test cricket ‘always been the priority’ in England
Morgan defended The Hundred amid criticism of England’s priorities following the Test team’s Ashes embarrassment.
England Twenty20 squad: Jofra Archer’s presence welcomed as he links up
The World Cup-winning fast bowler is still some way off an international return.
ICC U19 Men’s Cricket World Cup
ICC Men’s Under 19 World Cup: England, SA and Afghanistan win
England, Afghanistan and South Africa recorded wins in the West Indies.
England news: Injury-hit Jofra Archer back for first time in nearly a year
Archer is still some way off a return after heading to his native Barbados following a second operation on a longstanding elbow complaint last month.