Millennium Post

I am very happy with 97-run lead: Steve Smith

Australia skipper Steve Smith said he is delighted that his side could push their first innings’ total past 500-runs and take a sizeable lead in the second cricket Test against India.

The hosts replied to India’s 408-run total with 506 in their first innings with the captain himself scoring a hundred and Mitchell Johnson smacking a quick-fire 88 runs. “We were six down for 240-odd and Mitchell Johnson came out and took the charge to the Indian bowling,” Smith told reporters.

“He took them on and played some terrific cricket. He was positive from ball one. They tried to get stuck in to him and he took them on because it played into his favour. They didn’t really have an answer to him after that. To be fair the whole tail batted beautifully to get us up over the 500-mark. It was remarkable and we had a good day of cricket in the end. It was outstanding from Mitchell Starc and Nathan Lyon as well. Josh Hazlewood on debut was very good with the bat as well. They gave us a lead of 90-odd and it was a very good position,” he added.

Smith was humble about his own ton on debut as captain. “I said before in the pre-match conference I wanted to lead from the front. So obviously I am delighted with this hundred as well,” said Smith, who became the ninth Australian skipper to score a hundred on captaincy debut.

“I have done it in this game and hopefully it will continue in the future. Any hundred you score for Australia is a good one. But I am happier that we got 500 runs on the board. There is no point thinking about individual performances if the team is not doing well. So I am really happy with lead of 90,” said the young captain.

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