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07-Sep-2014 13:40:00 GMT
Australia news

Bailey Quits as Australia's T20 Captain

Harare: George Bailey has stepped down as Australia's Twenty20 captain in order to focus on next year's World Cup and a desire to play more first-class cricket.

The 32-year-old said he was aiming a Test recall and resigning from the post will give him an opportunity to focus on the longer format.

"I've thoroughly enjoyed the responsibility and honour of leading Australia in T20 internationals," Bailey said during a press conference. "Over the last couple of months I have had the opportunity to reflect on my role as T20 captain and the direction I want to take my cricket over the next few years.

"Personally, I want to focus on my one-day cricket as well as becoming the best long-form player I can to give myself the very best chance to play Test cricket again. Stepping down from the T20 captaincy allows me the option of not playing some T20 International matches so I can play more four-day cricket for Tasmania this side of Christmas.

"With that in mind and also an eye to the future and the 2016 ICC World Twenty20, I consider this to be a good time to step down from the captaincy and allow a new captain the chance to settle into the role. I have had numerous discussions with Cricket Australia and they have been very supportive of my decision. My passion and commitment to T20 cricket remains strong and I look forward to continuing my T20 roles with the Hobart Hurricanes and Kings XI Punjab."

Although Bailey hasn't retired from the format, he will not participate in Australia's upcoming T20s against Pakistan in the UAE and at home against South Africa in November. He has led Australia in 28 T20s in which he has scored 40 runs at an average of 26.11. He has also been Australia's leading run-getter since the 2011 World Cup with 1772 runs.

James Sutherland, Cricket Australia's CEO, thanked Bailey for his contribution as a leader and said the board respected his decision to step aside.

Australia will need to appoint a new T20 skipper with Shane Watson, David Warner and Aaron Finch, all being top contenders for the post.

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