Waugh warns England of Steve Smith: Former Australian captain has warned England regarding taking Steve Smith lightly in Ashes 2019.
Former Australia captain and current team mentor Steve Waugh has lauded the English spectators for appreciating “good cricket”. Speaking in an interview with cricket.com.au, Waugh sounded unperturbed regarding Australian players receiving any harsh treatment from the English crowd in the imminent Ashes series.
“From my experience with English crowds, I am sure they want England to win but when opposition teams play well – and we’ve had success here – the English crowds are the best in the world.
Steve Smith in the 2017/18 Ashes:
Batting average: 1️⃣3️⃣7️⃣.4️⃣0️⃣
High score: 2️⃣3️⃣9️⃣
Will Australia’s leading batsman in Test cricket have a similar impact in 2019? pic.twitter.com/81skRXhYxi
— ICC (@ICC) July 29, 2019
“They really appreciate good cricket, and I hope that’s going to be the case. There will be a small element that’s going to make it tough for our guys, but that’s professional sport and it’s water off a duck’s back that sort of stuff. They’re ready for it and they’ve experienced it before. Their main focus is playing well, and once you go out in the middle, you are cocooned from all that sort of noise,” Waugh was quoted as saying.
Steve Waugh warns England of Steve Smith
In the same interview, Waugh was vocal about Australia batsman Steve Smith, who will be playing a Test match after nearly 16 months. Expressing his confidence in Smith, Waugh warned the English team to take Smith lightly at their own peril.
“The thing I know about Steve Smith is he always finds a way. If someone’s going to write him off, or say he’s not what he used to be, they do that at their peril because he’s a guy that finds a way. His training and his work ethic is exceptional, I’ve never seen a guy hit as many balls. He’ll be thoroughly prepared for the first Test match,” Waugh said.
The recently concluded ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 was Smith’s first shot at international cricket after being banned for a year. In 10 ODIs, Smith scored 379 runs at an average of 37.90 and a strike rate of 85.94 including four half-centuries.