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'It's Like We Never Left' Says Banned Australian Cricketers Smith, Warner On Reintegration With Team

ANJALI NEGI | 0
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| March 17 , 2019 , 17:54 IST

After reconnecting with the national cricket squad for the first time since they were suspended, Steve Smith and David Warner both said it felt like they never left their team-mates. The cricketers met with their teammates in the United Arab Emirates to smooth the ground for their return to international cricket when their bans expire at the end of the month.

“It’s been awesome, it’s like we didn’t really leave. The boys were very accepting of us coming in; with open arms and a lot of big hugs and cuddles. It’s been great. It’s great to see the spirit that they’re in after a great series win in India, and obviously looking forward to watching them play against Pakistan here. Hopefully, they win the series there as well", said Warner.

Smith and Warner were both handed 12-months bans for their roles in the now infamous ball-tampering scandal that rocked the cricketing world. Along with the bans both were stripped of their captaincy tags with Smith not allowed to be considered for the lead role for a further 12 months after the end of the ban.

Since the drama of Cape Town, the Australian men's cricket team has been on a mission to rebuild its image and to do away with the win-at-all-costs culture that inquests say directly led to the cheating scandal.

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Smith and Warner will be available for selection from March 29 and are expected to be brought back into the mix in England for the World Cup and the Ashes. Following the meeting, Smith commented on the positive energy in the camp following a come from behind 3-2 ODI series win over India.

"It seems like there's really good energy in the group coming off the back of a really good win in India. Spirits are really high," Smith said. "It's been great to be back around the group, they've been really welcoming again and it's almost like we never left. So everything is on the right track."