Steve Smith: Australia batsman 'would be keen' to return to captaincy if selectors wanted him

Steve Smith reaches a half-century during Australia's Test series against India
Steve Smith scored the most runs by any Australian across all three formats in the 12 months to January 2021

Steve Smith says he "would be keen" to return as Australia captain if the national selectors wanted him.

Batsman Smith was removed as captain and banned from leadership roles for at least two years for his part in the ball-tampering scandal in 2018.

The 31-year-old served a year-long playing ban and resumed internationals in June 2019, under Tim Paine in Tests and Aaron Finch in T20 and ODIs.

"I've learnt so much about myself and grown as a human being," Smith said.

There was criticism of current Test captain Paineexternal-link following Australia's home series defeat by India.

Smith was named Australia's player of the series when he returned for the 2019 Ashes, scoring 774 runs at an average of 110.57.

"I've certainly had a lot of time to think about it and I guess now I've got to a point where if the opportunity did come up again, I would be keen," Smith told News Corp.

"If it was what Cricket Australia wanted and it was what was best for the team at the time, it's certainly something I would be interested in."

Smith admitted he would "always have to live" with the Cape Town Test, where batsman Cameron Bancroft tried to use sandpaper on the ball to give Australia an advantage.

He gave an emotional news conference after being stripped of the captaincy and later said he had struggled to come to terms with the impact on his career.

Smith has since captained the Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League.

"I haven't always felt like I wanted to captain again. That's only come in the last little bit," said Smith.

"I feel as though I'd be in a better place if the opportunity did come up. If it doesn't, that's fine as well."

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