David Warner and Steve Smith are walk-in selections for World Cup, says Michael Hussey

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David Warner and Steve Smith are walk-in selections for World Cup, says Michael Hussey

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SportsCafe Desk

06/21/2018

Australia veteran Michael Hussey has opined that David Warner and Steve Smith will be obvious selections in the Australian ODI squad for next year’s 2019 ICC World Cup in England. Hussey added that Eoin Morgan’s team will be the favorites to lift the World Cup trophy at home next year.

The whole ‘Sandpapergate’ scandal shook the entire country after skipper Steven Smith, vice-captain David Warner and batsman Cameron Bancroft were all found guilty of ball-tampering in the Test against South Africa. The trio were subsequently banned from international cricket for a long period of time. Smith and Warner, both received 12 months bans for their role in the incident while Bancroft was banned for a period of nine months. But former Australian team batsman Michael Hussey claimed that the duo will be automatic inclusions in next year’s World Cup squad.

"It's hard to say so far out, but the quality of players they are you probably would say they are (walk-up selections). As long as they do everything right in the lead up; they're in good touch skills-wise, they're in good fitness, no injury concerns and they've done all the right things preparation-wise and behavioural-wise as well, then you'd have to think they'd come straight back in because they're such quality players.

"They've been quality players for such a long period of time, they've had success at the highest level and are important players for Australia. I think they probably do (return) as long as they tick all the boxes along the way," Hussey said on The Unplayable Podcast on Thursday (June 21).

The tainted duo signed up to take part in the inaugural Global T20 Canada League. Warner will be a part of St. Lucia Stars too at the forthcoming Caribbean Premier League 2018. However, Hussey displayed concerns about the team dynamics which could see the likes of Warner and Smith may find difficult to fit into after being out of action for so long. 

The former CSK batsman also reckoned that hosts’ England will be favorites to lift the 2019 ICC World Cup based on recent form in the last matches and after breaking the record for the highest score in the ODI format against Australia.

"It (the World Cup) is not a long time away and that's the one thing that does concern me. Leading into a World Cup year, you want to have continuity with your team, you want to get the guys playing together, getting the understanding, the communication out in the middle, knowing their roles very well and feeling comfortable around each other and that's what England have been able to do.

"That's why I think they'll go into the World Cup as favourites because they have such a settled team and they've been playing together for quite a period of time now. Now Australia's not going to have that luxury. We're going to have some quality players coming back in but they're not going to have much time to really build that continuity and communication between the group," Hussey added.

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