Former Australian skipper Steve Smith and his deputy skipper David Warner was suspended from playing international cricket and domestic cricket in Australian soil in March earlier this year as they were found guilty of ball-tampering during the third Test in South Africa. Now, they are expected to return to playing cricket on Australian soil on September 22 for their respective club teams in grade cricket.
Sutherland, for whom Smith last turned in 2009, will host Mosman at the Glenn McGrath Oval while Warner’s Randwick-Petersham will commence their season against St George at Coogee Oval as the Premier Cricket Season starts off in Australia.
Though Smith and Warner’s final availability is yet to be finalized, it is likely that both Smith and Warner will be playing a fair few games for their sides. However, the duo will not face off till at least November 10 when Sutherland take on Randwick-Petersham in a One-Day game.
Smith and Warner are serving a one year ban for their involvement in the ball tampering scandal during the Test series against South Africa in March earlier this year. Cameron Bancroft has also been also banned for nine months after video clips surfaced that saw the rookie opener scratch the surface of the ball with a sandpaper.
The trio is not allowed to play international cricket during the time frame or compete in domestic competitions in Australia, including the Big Bash League. However, they were encouraged by Cricket Australia to take part on the club level in a bid to keep themselves match fit.
All three players have been involved in some form of cricket over the past few months. Smith and Warner turned out for Toronto Nationals and Winnipeg Hawks respectively in Canada’s inaugural Global T20 and had few decent outings throughout the competition. They are also taking part in the ongoing Caribbean Premier League (CPL) 2018.
Bancroft, on the other hand, was part of the NT Strike League in Darwin along with Warner.