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Steve Smith to miss England crowd's boos and jeers

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As Australia get ready to begin their limited-overs series tour in England this September, the matches will be played to empty grandstands as the global pandemic continues to prevent the allowance of spectators during sporting events, and their former captain Steve Smith says he will miss the taunts and jeers from the crowd.

Smith and the rest of the 21-man squad departed for England from Australia to contest their first international tour since their ODI series against New Zealand was abandoned on March 13.

Although delighted to 'just start playing again', Smith said he will miss not having the English crowds on hand to spur him on.

“I do like batting there,” he said of England. “But unfortunately, there’s no crowd there to egg me on and give me a bit more motivation.

“Still, there is going to be plenty of eyes on the TV and it is going to be great to be back out there playing.”

Smith's relationship with the English crowds soured following the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa, and his Test return in England in 2019 was marked by loud jeers and taunts from the spectators on attendance.

Although the level of acrimony reached such heights that the British sports minister called the reactions distasteful, some of the jeers slowly turned to cheers as Smith racked up an admirable 774 runs at 110.57.

Following the Aussies' arrival in England, they will be quarantined before playing five internal matches. The tour will kick off with a three-match T20 series from September 4 - 8 at the Rose Bowl, followed by a three-match ODI series from September 11-16 at Old Trafford.

Feature image courtesy: AFP / Peter Parks

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