Former captain Michael Clarke suggested the possibility of Steve Smith opening in Tests and potentially breaking Brian Lara’s 400-run record, following David Warner’s departure.
Michael Clarke has thrown his weight behind the idea of Steve Smith taking up the role of an opener in Test cricket. Smith has also shown keen interest in this position since the departure of David Warner, an idea initially suggested by former Australian all-rounder Shane Watson.
Amidst Cricket Australia’s selection options like Marcus Harris, Cameron Bancroft, Matt Renshaw, and Will Pucovski, there’s uncertainty about pairing Steve Smith with Usman Khawaja as openers. While opinions differ, Clarke sides with Shane Watson’s idea, believing that this challenge could reignite Smith’s struggling career.
Speaking on ESPN’s Around the Wicket Podcast, he suggested another potential swap: Cameron Green replacing Warner as opener unless Smith opts for the role.
“If he(Smith) wants to do it, I think they will allow him to do it. Listening to Patty Cummins’ quotes, I think it’s a simple swap. I think Cameron Green is going to come in to open the batting for David Warner unless Steve Smith wants to do it. If he does, they might go Steve Smith to open and Cam Green at No.4 or Green to No.6,” Clarke said.
“He is that good a player. It might be that challenge he’s looking for. If he opens, he will be the best opener within 12 months. Don’t be surprised if he breaks Brian Lara’s 400 record because he’s that good and now he’s got the whole day,” he added.
Earlier, addressing ABC Sport, Smith had expressed his willingness to open for Australia in Test matches. He stated that he’s content to bat at the top order if the team management deems it necessary. “I’m actually happy to go up the top, I’m pretty keen if that’s what they want to do,” Smith said.
Meanwhile, Australia’s test captain Pat Cummins said he is satisfied with Smith’s batting at No. 4 and prefers to keep the current batting order intact. Cummins valued the performance of Marnus Labuschagne, Smith, Travis Head, and Mitchell Marsh at positions 3, 4, 5, and 6, respectively, not wanting to disturb their rhythm.
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Last Updated on January 8, 2024
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