It appears a matter of when, not if, Steve Smith reclaims captaincy of the Australian cricket team.
The batting genius has been barred from official leadership titles since being stripped of the captaincy in the 2018 Sandpapergate scandal.
There was a though that Smith might lead Australia in tonight’s T20 international in the absence of the injured Aaron Finch – but coach Justin Langer opted for Matthew Wade instead.
It doesn’t look like it will stay that way for long.
Finch is 34-years-old and also captain of the ODI team.
And Tim Paine is 35 and captain of the Test team.
Langer confirmed Smith was considered for the captaincy in the SCG T20 – a move former Test captain Mark Taylor had argued for.
“Yeah of course,” Langer said on Fox Sports.
“We talked about a number.
“The exciting thing is that we’ve got so many options.
“We’re talking about building a leadership culture and leaders within the group.
“Matty Wade was the vice captain, Steve Smith’s done a brilliant job in the past.
“There’s a lot of process, probably, to go through before he becomes captain again.
Smith must be stand-in captain: Taylor
“We’ll go through that, we know what a great player he is, we’ve seen that his whole career.
“When the English crowd gave him a standing ovation at The Oval last year – talk about earning respect and earning back respect.
“It was one of the fondest moments of my coaching career.
“He’s doing all the right things to show leadership without the title at the moment.”
The other point of interest from Langer’s pre-game interview was his take on the Ravi Jadeja concussion drama.
Virat drops a soda
Jadeja was replaced by 12th man Yuzvendra Chahal in India’s T20 win at Manuka Oval, with Chahal going on to win man of the match honours.
Langer was shown in a heated discussion with match referee and former teammate David Boon, who green lighted the concussion replacement.
“It was just a strange situation,” Langer said.
“We saw Ravi Jadeja go down with a hamstring, then got a hit and then all of a sudden we found out he was out for concussion.
“Boonie and I had a really good conversation about his golf handicap and what footy team he plays for.
“So a bit of fun there.
But as a general rule the concussion protocols are strict, we adhere to them closely and they’re very important in our game.”