Steve Smith’s good performance as an opening batsman in the latest version of the Big Bash League means that he will play a similar role in the upcoming T20 series against South Africa.
The 34-year-old batsman hit two centuries (125 runs and 101 runs) for the Sydney Sixers and the Australian selectors believe that he will also stand his ground against the Protea bowlers.
“His exciting Big Bash innings underlined his willow dexterity and he deserves a chance to make his mark on the international stage as well,” said George Bailey, boss of selectors.
Smith will undoubtedly ensure consistency after Aaron Finch announced his international retirement earlier, while David Warner is enjoying a break during the South African safari.
Travis Head or Marcus Stoinis could be his opening partner, while Mitchell Marsh will hold the captaincy reins.
T20 squad against South Africa: Mitchell Marsh (captain), Sean Abbott, Jason Behrendorff, Tim David, Nathan Ellis, Aaron Hardie, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Spencer Johnson, Glenn Maxwell, Matt Short, Steven Smith, Marcus Stoinis and Adam Zampa.
ODI squad: Pat Cummins (captain), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Nathan Ellis, Cameron Green, Aaron Hardie, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Tanveer Sangha, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis , David Warner and Adam Zampa.
- Fixtures for the series between South Africa and Australia:
30 August in Durban – match starts at 18:00
1 September in Durban – match starts at 18:00
3 September in Durban – match starts at 14:00
7 September in Bloemfontein – match starts at 13:00
9 September in Bloemfontein – match starts at 13:00
12 September in Potchefstroom – match starts at 13:00
15 September in Centurion – match starts at 13:00
17 September in Johannesburg – match starts at 10:00.
Presenting your 18-player squad for the 2023 ODI World Cup, as well as two lead-in series against South Africa and India! ???????????? pic.twitter.com/h6jVWYJvMy
— Cricket Australia (@CricketAus) August 7, 2023