Warner denies Smith feud
Opener expects no change to his 12-month ban after he faced off with Steve Smith in Sydney on Saturday
Sam Ferris at Coogee Oval, Sydney
10 November 2018, 06:46 PM AEST
David Warner has laughed off suggestions of a feud with his former captain Steve Smith after the suspended duo squared off on Saturday in the NSW Premier Cricket competition.
There was no sense of animosity between Smith and Warner as they played in front of a packed house at Coogee Oval in Sydney, the two joking out in the middle and sharing a handshake and embrace at the end of the match.
After Smith’s Sutherland side recorded a three-wicket win, Warner said any rumours of a rift between himself and the former captain are untrue.
"There has been a lot of media talk that we don’t get along, that I’ve thrown him under the bus," Warner said in a rare media interview.
"It’s good comedy for us, we enjoy it. We’re catching up with each other and texting each other.
"We don’t read it all but some of the fun stuff the boys throw towards us.
"It’s great to have everyone here supporting us and cricket in general."
As part of their punishment from Cricket Australia for bringing the game into disrepute in the Cape Town ball-tampering scandal in March, the pair are ineligible to represent their country or play domestic cricket in Australia for 12 months.
The Australian Cricketers' Association recently lodged a submission to CA to reduce the bans in light of the recent cultural review findings, which the CA Board is giving due consideration.
But Warner says his outlook remains that he's suspended for a year and hopes to return to the national team once his 12-month ban is over.
"At the end of the day I’m sitting here 12 months on the sideline, that’s my take on it," he said.
"The end result and the long-form goal is to get back in the Baggy Green and play the World Cup (next year).
"But it's a game at a time."
Both players received applause upon their arrivals and departures to the middle on Saturday and there was a strong sense of goodwill around the banned pair.
Warner made 13 while Smith scored 48, captured a wicket and took a solid catch in the deep as Shane Watson wound back the clock in a blistering display of power-hitting.
Warner said the positive response could be seen as a sign of public support, but he also wanted to turn that encouragement towards the national team.
"What happened (in Cape Town) was very disappointing, we are ashamed of what happened," he said.
"But we’re here to try and promote cricket and it’s a fun game and we’re trying to get Australians back loving it.
"That’s the hardest thing with the (Australia) team at the moment, but they had a tough win last night.
"To be positive and try and pump the boys up is the most important thing from where we sit right now.
"They’re training their backsides off to win games. If we can be a bit more positive in what we do, it will help them go a long away."