World Cup 2019: Steve Smith and David Warner are all set to stage their comebacks in international cricket in the upcoming cricket World Cup at England later this month. The Australian stalwarts served the year-long ban, which concluded in March this year after they were found guilty of the ball-tampering during a series in South Africa last year.
Their returns would make the Kangaroos one of the most formidable sides in the multi-nation tournament and give the five-time champions a great chance to defend the World Cup. Many pundits have already voiced their opinions regarding the same and stated that Australia could well be on the path of lifting their sixth title at the Lord’s on 14th July.
However, given the performance of Australia in the last 15 month, many might not feel that confident. After the suspension of Warner and Smith, success had seemed a distant dream for the Men in Yellow as they went on to lose all the One Day series in 2018. But, their fate turned in 2019 as they registered an away victory against India and repeated the same feat against Pakistan in March this year. This is the first time Australia won back-to-back One Day series abroad since 2016.
Now, the return of the two heavyweights would further boost the performance of the team, given how abundantly they played before their suspension. David Warner had scored at an average of above-50 for four consecutive years since 2014 and was the highest run scorer for Australia in ODIs at that time. He notched up a humongous total of 3,210 runs in the last 67 matches, one of the highest by any in the world during the same time, he played. In the recently concluded IPL, he emerged as the highest run scorer. Given the fact that Warner played only 12 matches and still won the orange cap shows the form, he is in at the moment.
Steve Smith, captaining the side after Michael Clarke’s return, had also become one of the major performers for the team and scored at a rate of above-50 during the calendar years of 2015 and 2016. Smith’s performance had made him one of the players in the Big-Four of international cricket with Virat Kohli, Joe Root and Kane Williamson. Despite missing out a year of international cricket, he is still considered a part of this elite group.