Former Australia captain Steve Smith will lead Welsh Fire in the inaugural season of The Hundred.
Smith – currently ranked No.2 in the ICC’s Test batting rankings – was picked up by the Cardiff-based team in last October’s draft for £125,000 and will play alongside his compatriot Mitchell Starc in this year’s competition.
However, the pair could miss the latter stages of the tournament – which will run from July 17 to August 15 – should they be selected for Australia’s ODI series with Zimbabwe.
“It’s an honour to be asked to captain Welsh Fire in the first year of The Hundred,” Smith said. “Our squad looks super strong with a great group of players who’ve dominated the international and domestic scenes for the past few years.”
Smith was stripped of the Australian captaincy across all formats for his role in the 2018 Newlands ball-tampering scandal, for which he also received a one-year ban. He was also handed an additional one-year ban from taking on the Australian captaincy which will expire this March.
Welsh Fire’s men’s head coach Gary Kirsten praised Smith’s “knowledge” and “experience”, and added: “He’s got a track record of getting the best out of his players while performing to a very high standard himself, which will be key for us this summer.”
Welsh Fire will play against Oval Invincibles in the first match of the competition at The Oval on Friday, July 17.