Friend Clarke says decision to send Symonds home from Darwin was collective

September 29th, 2008 - 3:57 pm ICT by ANI  

Jaipur, Sept 29 (ANI): Australian vice-captain Michael Clark has clarified that the decision to send Andrew Symonds home ahead of the recent home ODI series against Bangladesh in Darwin was a collective one, and not his alone.

He said he was still a friend of Symonds and that the decision was misinterpreted by the media.

Symonds was punished by the teams leadership group for missing a team meeting and going out on a fishing trip.

When I was given the vice-captaincy, I knew part of that role was making sure you put the team first. The one thing that has probably been misinterpreted is that I didnt make the decision to send Andrew Symonds home on my own, it was the leadership group, The News quoted Clarke as saying in an interview with The Age.

The group that took decision also included captain Ponting, coach Tim Nielsen and team manager Steve Bernard, but it was Clarke who faced the media soon after the decision was made.

Denying rumours of a rift between the two, Clarke said: We believed and still believe it was best for the team and best for Symmo as well. I have made clear that I am still great friends with Andrew and I will be until the day I die. I want him back playing because I love playing cricket with him.

On the Test tour to India , Clarke has replaced Symonds. The first of four Tests will be played at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore , the same ground where Clarke had scored a century on debut.

I want it to feel the same. Four years ago for my debut, it was tough cricket but my mindset was just about absolutely soaking up every chance of playing Test cricket for my country. I dont think that has changed, even if my role in the team has changed a little bit, added Clarke. (ANI)

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