Michael Clarke, others question CA’s decision to call back Steve Smith from ongoing ODI series in Sri Lanka

The tours to Indian subcontinent have never been a bed of roses for the visiting teams, especially Australia. On their current tour of Sri Lanka, the story was the same as they were blanked in the Test series by a margin of 3-0 by the hosts. When ODIs began, things looked to change as Australia won the first game. But with Sri Lanka winning the second game by a thumping margin, the familiar subcontinental fears resurfaced. ALSO READ: How easy is it being Steve Smith?

But the biggest setback came minutes after the loss, as Cricket Australia (CA) announced that the skipper Steve Smith will return back to the country in order to rest and prepare for the South Africa series, which actually begins in two months’ time. This baffling decision attracted reactions from cricket fraternity, with former Australian skipper Michael Clarke too joining the tirade. He tweeted his disbelief at the news of Smith’s rest, which read as:

Clarke’s comments came as a reaction to former team-mate Michael Slater’s tweet, which echoed similar sentiments:

Former Sri Lankan captain Mahela Jayawardena also reacted by expressing surprise over the decision. He tweeted:

His tweet found support from former Australian cricketer and a current commentator/expert Dean Jones, who wrote:

Indian cricketer-turned-cricket analyst Aakash Chopra also tweeted on the matter, asking how’s Mitchell Starc or David Warner’s work-load any lesser than that of Smith’s?

Smith, who himself said he hates missing cricket, will miss the remaining three ODIs and two T20Is, with vice-captain Warner taking over the leadership of the side for the first time. “I hate missing cricket, but in the long run it will do me a world of good,” Smith said following his side’s 82-run loss on Wednesday that saw the hosts level the series at 1-1. “The schedule is very busy. I still want to take on the role in all three formats and do it to the best of my ability,” he concluded.