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Smith unlikely to play against NZ, indicates George Bailey

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Steve Smith is unlikely to be in the Playing XI for the opening game against New Zealand at least, Australia’s Chairman of Selectors George Bailey has indicated.

“I think all the members of our 15 have a role to play but I don’t think that will be starting in the 11 for Steve,” Bailey said. “I think that… should we need a role from him at some stage, then absolutely.”

The vacancy will be expectedly filled by Tim David, who had made all the right noises in the finishing role in the leadup to this T20 World Cup.

Bailey was noncommittal on Mitchell Marsh though. “I think he bowled 20 to 30 balls with pretty good intensity in the nets yesterday.

“He is tracking well. I don’t think it is any secret that our allrounders are an important part of our structure.

“I think he has hit all the markers that he wanted to but I think given the importance of that structure it is not something we wanted to risk too early but I fully expect that Mitch will be available and ready to go, whether that is Saturday or game two.”

Bailey said that David Warner, who sat out of the warm-up match against India, was doing fine after copping a neck strain in the series against England.

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