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The topic on everyones lips .... can Michael Clarke can’t get his hamstring right to take Australian Cricket forward?  And if not, who?


The candidates from my outside view would surely include Shane Watson, Brad Haddin, George Bailey, David Warner and Steven Smith. A mixed bag of experience, skill, and leadership qualities. 


The Captain of your country is the biggest honour a sportsman can ever dream of and all candidates deep down would be hoping that the Australian Cricket Board will be looking favourable on them.  While it would be a pleasure to play under any of the five names mentioned above,  the long term future has to be the biggest factor in the decision so lets look at the candidates briefly.


Shane Watson is 33, would do a fantastic job with his all-round knowledge of the game and extensive experience on all conditions offered around the world. But, like Clarke, Watto is injury prone which could make the Board Members get the rubber out when scribing his name.


George Bailey has done an exceptional job when asked to fill in, but inconsistent personal performances will have decision makers nominating him as last resort. He also turned down the T20 Captaincy to concentrate on his Test career, which might indicate he may not want the job. Though, if he wants to be the main contender, he is the incumbent now for the rest of the South Africa series and needs to relish the opportunity with some big scores. Some players perform better as the leader, Is Georgie boy one of them?


Brad Haddin is a logical replacement for Clarke, but age is a factor and he will likely be thought as best suited as deputy, which is the most important role at present for Australian Cricket moving forward. A keeper is always a good sounding board for any Captain out in the middle, as they are closest and always in the action, getting a feel for batsmen’s technique and bowler’s rhythm. I think he could easily take the title however if he commits to playing on for another four years minimum.


David Warner has not been seriously talked about in the ballots, but he is certainly a dark horse contender,  His early career had a few misdemeanours but he has curbed his ways and matured into the role and the team and those transgressions are a distant memory for the Board.. He is a courageous player, awesome to watch, and I would pay top dollar to get a sit to watch him bat, Personally, I'd hate to see that his energy, excitement, entertainment and enthusiasm will be lost with the pressures of Captain, so it's a gamble. He did an outstanding job captaining one game with the Sydney Thunder in last years T20 Big Bash, which should help his cause.  Watch this space?

Steven Smith is the front runner and the future hierarchy of Australian cricket.  He has had some success captaining the NSW Blues to a Shield Final win last year. He is a student of the game and always thinking strategy and tactics on his feet during a fixture. He is a born leader. The only issue with Steven is that he is not a permanent selection in the playing eleven in the One Day form of the game.  If the Captain of the Test team is to remain captain of the One Day Team as well, then Steven would likely provide that solid synergy between the Australian Cricket Board and its Selectors.


Grab the ball by the horns Australia and have Steven Smith as Captain and David Warner as Vice-Captain respectively. It is not a short term but rather a long term decision to create stability and some certainty in the Australian line up, which has been lacking in the last couple of years.




Captain of the Scrubbers XI – Brad Hogg


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