Steve Smith focuses on home run
Steve Smith is excited to play international cricket in front of the home crowd for the first time since January 2018.
Smith last made an international appearance at home during the 2017-18 Ashes and the five-match ODI series that followed, against England, before serving a year-long suspension for his role in the ball-tampering incident in March that year during the Cape Town Test. He then made his international comeback in this year’s World Cup and the Ashes series that followed, both in England.
“It should be good. I just can’t wait to play. My focus now is on the home run,” Smith was quoted as saying by the ICC website.
“Any time you walk out and play for Australia, it’s a great honour and to be back playing here in Australia, I’m excited,” he added.
Smith followed up the World Cup with an exceptional performance in the Ashes series, which was retained by Australia for the first time in 18 years on English soil. Smith is now is getting ready to fit into the T20I outfit, a format he hasn’t played at the international stage since the 2016 ICC World T20, and has his eyes set on next year’s T20 World Cup.
“I’m sure with the World Cup in a year’s time, there’s an opportunity to have that continuity,” Smith said. “I think we’ve seen over the years that the T20 format is one where guys are rested a lot. That will probably change leading into the World Cup I dare say.
“I think it’s a great opportunity for 14 guys that have been picked here to have that continuity and try to perform together and work towards hopefully being part of a World Cup. It starts here this (Australian) summer. We’ve got six games straight.”
Australia take on Sri Lanka in a three-match T20I series that begins on Sunday at the Adelaide Oval. The Aussie squad will feature seamer Sean Abbott who’s in line for his first international cap in five years after Andrew Tye was sidelined after sustaining an elbow injury during a fielding drill on Friday afternoon at the Adelaide Oval.
Tye will consult a specialist in Sydney to determine the extent of the damage and a timeline for his return to playing, but he won’t be taking part in the Sri Lanka T20Is.
Cricket Australia (CA) on Saturday confirmed that 27-year-old Abbott will join the squad when they assemble in Brisbane on Monday, where the second match of the Sri Lanka series begins two days later. Captain Aaron Finch confirmed that Tye had suffered the damage to his right elbow during the team’s first training session of the home summer on Friday.
And even though the 32-year-old bowled at nets shortly afterwards, he had consulted with team medical officials and head coach Justin Langer, and took no part in the match-eve session.
“It was one of the first handful of throws he did in a high intensity drill (on Friday), which required 100 per cent throwing,” Finch was quoted as saying by the CA website.“He was just a little bit off balance and I think it was a bit of side-arm, slingy-type throw and he just felt a bit of a pop in there.It’s unfortunate for AJ that he won’t take any part in the series, but he’ll see the specialist in Sydney in the next couple of days to get their thoughts.”