Steve Smith is a tough nut to crack and it’s pretty evident from the way he has racked up runs with sheer authority in Test cricket. Hardly has he failed and an average of 64 in 70 matches is a testament to his class and calibre. The Sydney talent, who’s also ICC’s number-one ranked Test batsman, was the cynosure for Pakistan ahead of the opening Test at the Gabba in Brisbane.
And it was Yasir Shah, who removed the big fish in the single digits, though it couldn’t help the visitors evade a defeat by an innings and five runs. It was a rare failure for Smith as he averages over 90 with 16 tons while batting in the first innings of a Test. After dismissing him, Shah gave Smith a send-off and that has worried Wasim Akram, the legendary Pakistan left-arm fast bowler.
Shah has dismissed Steve Smith 7 times in Tests
Akram feels that Yasir’s action could end up backfiring on Pakistan itself. “You know in our times, when I played I didn’t bother with how many times I got out who. It was the last thing on our minds. Nowadays, with stats, people know everything,” Akram was quoted as saying in foxsports.com.au.
Stuart Broad, the England fast bowler, has dismissed Smith the most times (8) in 24 Tests. However, in only 7 matches, Shah has got rid of Smith 7 times. The leg-spinner broke though the run-machine’s defence and rattled his woodwork.
“But I, as a bowler, (worried about) ‘am I impacting the game or not? Am I winning the game for Pakistan or vice versa?’ If not, that doesn’t matter if I’ve got him seven times. It was just an inexperienced mistake. I hope he hasn’t poked the bear there,” the southpaw added.
Shah was Pakistan’s leading wicket-taker in the Gabba Test, nipping out four wickets. But he leaked 205 runs in 48.4 overs at an economy rate of 4.21. Apart from Smith, Shah also got rid of Joe Burns, who got 97, and the lower-order batsmen in Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood. As far as Smith is concerned, he will be looking for redemption in the Day-Night Test at the Adelaide Oval.
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