Following his first series as opener, Steve Smith is comfortable at the top

 Following his first series as opener, Steve Smith is comfortable at the top

Steve Smith (Source: X)

Since David Warner in 2011, Steve Smith has become the first Australian to carry his bat. Steve Smith claimed he enjoyed the first couple of weeks of opening the batting at Test level. Steve Smith responded perfectly to critics who said he shouldn’t open for Australia in Test cricket.

After a slow start as David Warner‘s replacement up top with Usman Khawaja, the 34-year-old nearly guided Australia over the line to escape a dramatic eight-run defeat at the Gabba against the West Indies.

Smith, who has struck 27 of his 32 Test hundreds at No. 3 or No. 4, claims he did not overthink his opening strategy. After scores of 12, 11 not out, and six, Australia’s star hitter smashed an undefeated 91 in the second innings on Sunday and says he feels “comfortable” as an opener.

“There was a lot of commentary around I’d failed in two or three innings – I had a not-out and two low scores,” Smith said at the MCG on Wednesday. “I’m now averaging 60 as an opener.

“It was simply another position; I’d faced the new ball several times before, coming in early. “I’ve enjoyed the first couple of weeks of it … if they see fit to move me back down, I’ll do whatever the team needs.”

West Indies pulled out the greatest win in their Test history

Smith was the lone player to face the Windies’ newest speed sensation, Shamar Joseph. The 24-year-old ripped through Australia, scoring 7-68 to lead his team to their first Test victory down under since 1997.

Smith also justified his choice to give Josh Hazlewood to face two balls against Joseph in the match’s last over.

Hazlewood was Joseph’s final victim, causing loud and jubilant West Indies celebrations as they pulled off possibly the greatest upset in Test history.

Shamar Joseph had a terrible toe injury in the second innings of his second Test, forcing him to return to the Caribbean and miss the ILT20 with Warner’s Dubai Capitals.

Smith will skipper Australia’s ODI side in Pat Cummins’ absence when they begin the three-match Dettol series on Friday at the MCG. It will be Australia’s first 50-over encounter since winning the World Cup by defeating hosts India in the final last year.


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