In his book, The Journey, Steve Smith has admitted that he had instinctively looked up to the dressing room on Pete Handscomb’s suggestion during the Bangalore Test this year. He has also rubbished the claims that he favours his “mates” as selection for the highly anticipated Ashes looms large.
Steve Smith has released his book, The Journey, ahead of the home Ashes series where the young Aussie skipper wrote a lot many things on his batting, leadership, his formative years, and his career so far. India has been an intricate part of his playing career and Smith, who shares a vibrating rivalry with Virat Kohli on the pitch, didn’t hold back in clarifying some of the controversial moments on his tour of India earlier this year.
The one that tops it would the Bangalore Test controversy where Smith had looked up to the dressing room before asking for a review. It didn’t go down well with the opponents and Virat Kohli didn’t play it well in the media either.
Addressing it, Smith said, “If we won that game then we retained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy, would have been 2-0 up, so it was just like, "I don't want to be out". Pete probably didn't help me much either coming down and when you're in a moment of desperation and someone says, ‘Why don't you look up there?’ your first instinct is just to look where he tells you. It was a mistake on my behalf…”
The verbal exchange had also led to the release of the stump microphone audio, something which Smith had expressed his complete disregard about.
“It annoyed me that they had to sieve back through the archives and find those moments, particularly painting a bad light on our team when both teams were guilty of doing the same things. That was disappointing,” said Smith.
Australia had attempted a good comeback in Dharamsala during the fourth Test of the series where Smith had hit a hundred in the first innings. And the skipper reveals that the reason for his batting at an increased pace was due to his mental drainage that he was experiencing at the end of the India tour and was lucky to get a century in that game.
“I'd done a lot of batting in that series and even leading up to the last Test match, I hit an unusually low amount of balls before the game, because I just wanted to get in the middle and give everything I had left. I was very mentally fatigued.
“…It was just about seeing the ball and hitting the ball in the last Test match… I think at one point I hadn't made 10 [yet] and I hit Umesh Yadav over cover for four, something I wouldn't normally do in a Test match. It was a little bit bizarre. I was still fortunate enough to get a hundred,” said Smith.
Ahead of the much-anticipated Ashes, the 28-year-old insists that he doesn't wield the selection power in the team in a pointed retort to his critics, including former Australian players, Rodney Hogg, and Brett Geeves, who believe Smith holds too much influence on the selection table.
“I’m not a selector, but I certainly speak to the selectors a lot and express my views. All this rubbish about me picking my mates, it’s absolute garbage. I certainly don’t agree with that.”