If Smith was Indian, his batting technique would be accepted: Coach Woodhill
Steve Smith has been constantly targeted for his fidgety batting technique ever since he came out to bat in his early days. Well, the right-hander made his international debut as a leg-spinner when Cricket Australia was looking for Shane Warne’s replacement. But little did everyone know that Smith turned out to be a world-class batsman.
His batting technique is unique and uneasy but that doesn’t matter as long as he is contributing more runs for the team. He has by far scored 6973 runs in 68 Tests at a staggering average of 64.56 with 26 centuries and 27 fifties to his name. The No.1 Test batsman recently smashed 774 runs in 4 Tests in the just-concluded Ashes 2019 series with the best score of 211.
Steve Smith’s coach Trent Woodhill told had Steve Smith been an Indian, his unique technique would have been accepted and that he wouldn’t have been criticized for his batting.
“If Steven was Indian, his technique and mechanics and the strategy around his batting would just be accepted. We see Kohli, Gavaskar, (Rohit) Sharma, Ganguly, Sehwag – all these players have unique techniques.
The Indian system is all about output, about scoring runs, ‘We don’t care how you do it as long as you do it’, whereas in Australia we wanted you to score well and we wanted you to look good,” Woodhill was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo.
He called the dressing room in Australian cricket a brutal place for a young player, who is not conventional and has a technique that doesn’t match the accepted styles of batsmanship. “A cricket dressing room can be a brutal place for a young player, who might be forced to conform – more so in Australia than any other country I’ve been in.
In Australia, we struggle with things that are different. We like a sexy Shaun Marsh thirty, made with a conventional, attractive technique, rather than an unconventional Steven Smith hundred,” Woodhill further explained.
Woodhill went on to cite some examples of how other nations gleefully accepted bowlers like Rashid Khan, who despite being a leg-spinner, deftly holds the ball like an off-spinner.
Coming to Indian cricket, their fans accepted and enjoyed the success of Anil Kumble, who had seam-up, wrist-spin, predominantly wrong’un bowling technique. He also further added that Smith is the best ever since Don Bradman without second thoughts.