Cricket 2019: Australia v Pakistan second Test


“The wonderful thing is he’s a very competitive young man like all the young players, competitive beasts … it probably wasn’t the most ideal time for him to go in [in Brisbane] actually, when the boys had set up such a foundation. He’s been Mr Fix It for a long time for us. It puts a smile on my face knowing if he’s got a little bit more fire in his belly if that’s possible, that’s good for the Australian cricket team.”

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Langer said Australia was all but certain to retain the same XI that prevailed at the Gabba. The only player in the side under any real pressure to retain his place is Travis Head, who was dropped for the last Test of the Ashes series and made 24 in Brisbane when Australia had already built a big total.

“He missed out on the last Test in England, he hasn’t made the runs he was probably hoping for,” Langer said. “But he made the runs in his last Shield game, played well in the first innings. He fielded well. We will just be encouraging him to play his best cricket at a ground he loves.

Steve Smith had to dry off in Brisbane.Credit:Getty Images

“One of the reasons we selected him in the squad is we knew the second Test was in Adelaide. We all know he’s a great young bloke, he’s a very good young player and hopefully he does well this week.

“There’s no reason he shouldn’t. He’s in good nick.”

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The Australian Cricketers’ Association, meanwhile, will seek a meeting with the Cricket Australia board in an effort to gain further understanding about the banning of Women’s Big Bash League player Emily Smith for a breach of the game’s anti-corruption code.

The players’ union board including president Shane Watson gathered for a special meeting on Tuesday night to discuss the sanction handed to Smith, who was suspended for a total of three months after releasing her team via social media an hour before a washed-out game in a joke gone wrong.

CA indicated the governing body was happy to discuss the matter, but didn’t commit to an extraordinary meeting of boards.

The ACA has also signed up Smith on an internship during her ban this summer.

“Emily has been offered and accepted an internship at the ACA to continue her professional development during this challenging time,” the ACA said in an email to members.

“The internship will keep her involved in the game she loves and will incorporate the promotion of ACA programmes and services; past-player engagement and event management.”

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