Big Bash League: Henriques Calls CA’s BBL Decision Against Smith as ‘Sad Day for Cricket’
Sydney Sixers captain Moises Henriques called Cricket Australia’s decision of not allowing Steve Smith to play in the Big Bash League (BBL) finals as “disappointing” and “sad day for cricket”.
After Australia’s upcoming One-Day International (ODI) series against New Zealand was postponed, Sixers wanted to have their former captain back for the knockout stages. However, CA rejected their application, citing the recently-made rules of the tournament. Get quick updates of BBL standings. Check this latest BBL points table.
“To say (I’m) a little bit disgruntled would be an understatement. It’s really disappointing,” Henriques told reporters on the eve of Sixers’ Qualifier fixture against Perth Scorchers.
“You have got a former Australian captain, one of the best players in the world. You have got IPL teams who pay multi-million dollars just to have this guy as part of their franchise. Advertising, bums on seats, eyes on TVs – I mean, you do the maths. And we’re saying no because of a rule that is two weeks old in some COVID bubble hub. To me, I don’t get it,” Henriques added.
CA is robbing Smith of the opportunity: Henriques
“When you’ve got someone who’s played for your club for 11 years, he’s captained the country, he’s one of the best cricketers in the world and this tournament has probably lacked those types of stars throughout … you’ve got someone who wants to play, basically for free, just to play and you’re robbing him of the opportunity. It’s sad for cricket. That’s all,” Henriques said further, according to news.com.au.
Smith brings no safety risk: Henriques
The Australian all-rounder also pointed out that since Smith would be coming from the Ashes’ biosecure bubble, he would not pose any risk to the Sixers’ health.
“It’s not a matter of protocol. It’s a matter of a rule that got changed two weeks ago that they probably didn’t quite cross the t’s and dot the is on. I’m still hopeful that they’ll look at that again and realise they made the wrong call. We’ve still got at least 24 hours before the game starts,” said Henriques
New rules in 2021-22 BBL
The current set of rules in the BBL allows a replacement player to only come from the local player replacement pool, which was created earlier this month to aid the clubs in dealing with the ongoing covid situation.
Had Sixers included Smith’s name in their local replacement pool, any other club could have picked him up and he would have then been forced to play for them. However, back then Sixers did not know the ODI series between New Zealand and Australia would be postponed. There’s more cricket tips and guide here in our website.
“This isn’t a rule that’s been in place for 11 years or even this year entirely, it’s just a two-week-old rule. It’s been a really difficult year and we’re all learning on the fly. What I do respect is that (Big Bash organisers) have kept rolling with the punches. I just can’t see why they don’t keep rolling with the punches now; why they can’t continue to be flexible,” explained Henriques.
One of the most celebrated players in the Sydney Sixers camp, Smith captained the side to BBL title in the inaugural edition in 2011-12.
If Sixers win on Saturday night against Scorchers, it will host the final on Jan. 28 at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG). Sixers are eyeing to become the first-ever BBL side to win three consecutive titles. We recommend these best betting apps that are 100% safe. Check the full review here.