HomeCricketNews"For all intents and purposes," Bailey on Smith's Elevation as Test Opener

“For all intents and purposes,” Bailey on Smith’s Elevation as Test Opener

The Australian batter Steve Smith has been elevated in the batting lineup to open in Tests as the successor of David Warner.

Bailey on Smith’s Elevation as Test Opener

The Australian Test team has a major setback after David Warner’s retirement and on this occasion, Steve Smith has revealed his desire to open in Tests. After a long-lasting discussion, he is set to open in the first test of the West Indies tour of Australia 2024.

George Bailey hopes Steve Smith’s elevation to open in tests would extend his 34-year-old career to a new path.

He revealed that the key reason for Smith’s promotion for the upcoming Test series in the West Indies tour of Australia 2024 was to allow the reinstatement of Cameron Green, who will be playing in Smith’s former position at number four.

But the decision was taken after a discussion with head coach Andrew McDonald and Test Skipper Pat Cummins who finals the batting order. Bailey affirmed Tony Dodemaide and McDonald who believe the Test team should have a strong batting line which also included 24-year-old Green.

“For all intents and purposes, this is where Steve wants to stay,” Bailey told reporters.

“One of the things I’m really excited about the change is that I think he’s really motivated and energised and excited about the opportunity, and fingers crossed that can provide some longevity in the format.

Steve Smith
Steve Smith (Image: CA)

“For someone who has achieved as much as he has over such a long period of time across all formats, it’s a challenge or an itch he’d like to scratch and ultimately for us, as a team, it’s something that fits.

“It’s selfless that someone who’s had such success in one position or a couple of positions in the middle order, that he’s willing and hungry to have a crack at something different.

“And it provides an opportunity to slot Greeny into number four where he’s had success for Western Australia.

“The regard in which we hold Cameron and the way the rest of that batting order is functioning left us feeling we have someone we think is pretty talented who was potentially going to find it pretty hard to get any Test cricket in the next 12 months or so.”

Bailey said the panel had discussed the possibility of replacing Green for Warner in the Opening role.

“I think he’s technically capable of doing that (opening),” Bailey said of Green.

“But also as a younger guy who is potentially going to bowl some overs as well, and given the enormous success at first-class level wherever he’s batted but particularly at four or five, I think it (four) is the ideal spot for him to set him up for success.”

“This is a line-ball decision, it’s a moment in time of how we see it at the moment,” he said.

“There will be opportunities going forward and there’s no doubt part of cricket selection is being in the right place at the right time, and playing at or close to your best at the right time.

Cameron Green
Cameron Green (image: CA)

“In some ways, it’s no different to what Michael Neser and Mark Steketee, Joel Paris, and Scott Boland have probably felt over the last 12-18 months.

“They’re all putting fantastic numbers up and if you’re working your way down a statistics list, all could mount a case that they deserve to be getting an opportunity to play Test cricket.

“But there’s some guys ahead of them that are doing some pretty fantastic stuff and I think that needs to be celebrated as much as we can empathise that it’s disappointing for some of those guys to miss out.

“Ultimately we are trying to pick our best six batters. At the moment, as it stands, we see Matthew Renshaw as the next-best.”

Bailey was depressed on decided to overlook Bancroft who was the leading run-scorer in the shield competition last summer and the most prolific in the first half of the current campaign.

“I can categorically say no, and I’ve shared this with Cameron on a number of occasions,” said Bailey.

“It has never at any stage been discussed from the panel’s perspective, it’s purely a cricket decision.

“There’s not a member of the team that would have an issue with Cam playing.

“We certainly don’t have an issue with it, and I think a lot of people tend to forget the fact that Cam’s played Test cricket since returning from the ban (during the 2019 Ashes series).

“I’d be disappointed if people were looking to that as a reason, and all I can do is reiterate that’s not the case. It never has been and it never will be,” he concluded.

Australia will be playing two tests, a three-match ODI and T20Is against West Indies starting on January 17. The first test will be played between January 17 and 21 at Adelaide Oval.

I'm Johi, a dedicated cricket news writer! With a passion for the game and a keen eye for detail, I would always love to bring you the latest updates, insights, and analysis from the world of cricket & Football with a positive entertainment.

Must Read