Hyderabad:Michael Clarke does not wear his heart on sleeve and admit it was painful for him to dump Andrew 'gone-fishing' Symonds.
But what the Australian vice-captain does not hide is how much he yearns for the return of the feisty all-rounder he counts among his chums.
With Ricky Ponting recuperating from a wrist surgery, Clark led the Aussies to a 3-0 thumping of Bangladesh at Darwin but the side missed Symonds who was sent home by the leadership group after he had deemed a fishing trip more important than a compulsory team meeting.
Asked how difficult it was to acquiesce to such a harsh decision for someone so close to him, Clarke evaded a direct answer and maintained there was no other way out.
"This was a decision taken by the leadership group and I still believe it was taken in the best interest of the team and in the best interest of Symmo as well," Clarke told PTI.
But he makes it very evident that he cannot wait to see Symonds back to where he belonged.
"It's a great news that he is back playing cricket. I know he will be back in the side on his own strength. He is a great player and also a great guy off the field. He is very good friend and I just love to have him around," Clarke said.
Another painful -- this one not mental -- experience that Clarke has gone through was when he added another tattoo on an already well-decorated body. "I just love tattoo," said the youngster, flaunting his forearm, which boasts of a couple of body art.
Beneath the 'Carpe Diem' 'seize the day' in Latin is now another Arabic pearl of wisdom.
"Translated, it means 'Pain of discipline is nothing compared to the pain of disappointment'," he explained. As he speaks, Clarke rolled up his right sleeve to reveal another on his right arm, a guardian angel.
"It still hurts," he said, grimacing.
"There is another on my back, but I cannot show you right now. It's 389 in Roman numerals," said the youngster, the 389th player to win a baggy green.