IND vs AUS, 1st Test: Smith admits some of Aussie batters got out to pre-determined shots

Australia vice-captain Steve Smith on Thursday rejected suggestions that his team missed a trick or two by dropping top-order batter Travis Head and by playing two off-spinners in the first Test against India here on Thursday, adding that some of Aussie batters got out playing pre-determined shots.

Electing to bat first, Australia were bowled out for 177 in their first innings with Indian left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja claiming 5/47 and off-spinner R Ashwin taking 3/42. Smith (37) and Marnus Labuchagne (49) shared an 82-run partnership during the best period of the day for Australia as they recovered from 2-2 in the third over.

In reply, India rode on a breezy unbeaten 56 by skipper Rohit Sharma to reach 77/1 in 24 overs at stumps, needing 100 more runs to overtake the visitors’ score with nine wickets in hand.

Smith said that Matt Renshaw had done well when given an opportunity and they discussed the various combinations before deciding the playing XI.

Experienced Smith, who has led Australia in 36 Tests before losing his captaincy following the Sandpapergate scandal before taking charge of a couple of tests as stand-in skipper in the last two seasons, said though both Nathan Lyon and Todd Murphy are off-spinners, they are different from each and have different ways of doing their job.

Smith admitted that some of his batters could have gotten out playing pre-determined shots expecting the ball to spin more. It happens when the ball is doing tricks on the pitch, he said.

He admitted that it was not a treacherous wicket and it was possible to score runs as shown by him, Labushagne and Rohit Sharma.

The right-handed batter said Jadeja bowled well and it was now for them to restrict India to as low a score as possible and maintain their chances in the Test.




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