Steve Smith available to captain Australia again as two-year leadership ban ends

By Sports Desk March 29, 2020

Could Steve Smith ever captain Australia again? That is a question that took on new relevance on Sunday after Smith's two-year leadership ban ended.

Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft were suspended from cricket after a ball-tampering scandal on the 2018 tour of South Africa.

A scheme was cooked up to use sandpaper to doctor the ball, with Smith being aware of the plan but doing nothing to prevent it going ahead.

Disgraced by the incident, Smith was served with a one-year playing ban that began on March 29, 2018, with a further 12-month suspension from leading Australia in any format of the game.

That period has now expired, which could open the door for Smith to return to the captaincy, although Tim Paine is the current Test skipper and Aaron Finch has the limited-overs job locked down.

Paine, 35, has hinted he may be nearing the end of his Test career, while 30-year-old Smith previously flourished in the role and has shone as a batsman since returning to the team.

Smith has attempted to deflect questions about returning to his former job as Australia's Test leader.

Speaking in November 2019, he said: "My record probably is better when I'm captain than when I'm not. That sort of pressure doesn't really bother me. But I'm not thinking about captaincy or anything at this point in time.

"I'm really comfortable where I’m at and I’m enjoying what I’m doing."

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    Babe Ruth knew time was up on his baseball playing career on May 30 in 1935, but his name lives on and many consider him the greatest player to have swung a bat.

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    1935 – Babe Ruth struck out for the last time

    Nothing that happened in his short spell at the Boston Braves could stain his name, yet Ruth's move from the New York Yankees turned out to be an almighty flop. Arriving in February 1935, Ruth – baseball's biggest draw of the era and a player whose name resonates to this day – offered just glimpses of his glory days. On May 25, he thundered three home runs, albeit in a losing cause against Pittsburgh. That feat took his career haul to a then-record 714 homers, and there would be no more, Ruth playing his final game five days later against the Phillies. At the age of 40, out of shape and a shadow of his former self as a player, Ruth called it quits, his retirement announced days later.

    1984 - Liverpool stun Roma - in Rome

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    1987 - Tyson takes down Thomas

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    Having progressed through four rounds of two-legged ties to reach the final on English soil, United faced the daunting task of taking on Benfica.

    The Portuguese heavyweights had won the competition twice before and boasted all-time great striker Eusebio in their ranks.

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    1997 - Stockton sends Jazz to first NBA Finals

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    2010 - Halladay's perfect game

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    2016 - Hyderabad emerge victorious in high-scoring final

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    The skipper then stepped up by marshalling his bowlers as they held off an onslaught, the hosts finishing just short with their reply of 200-7.

    It was the third final Bangalore had lost, having also done so in 2009 and 2011, while Hyderabad reached the final again in 2018 but lost to Chennai Super Kings.

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