Smith on 100 ODIs: I have evolved as a white-ball player
Kolkata: From starting as a leg-break bowler to scoring a hundred in a high-pressure World Cup semi-final, Australia captain Steve Smith feels he has matured quite a lot as he gears up to play his landmark 100th ODI on Thursday.
"I think I have evolved a lot as a white ball player. When I first started playing one-day cricket, my first 30-odd games, I played more as a bowler. I had to change a bit there. I've been batting at No 3 now for a while now," Smith said when asked about his feelings ahead of milestone match. "I had to find the right tempo for the game, whether it's hitting boundaries or finding the right time to hit a right boundary. You learn as you play. It's pretty exciting to play my 100th game tomorrow (Thursday), " Smith said.
Smith said his most memorable ODI innings was century in the 2015 World Cup semi-final against India.
"I would probably say my most memorable innings is the century I scored against India at the SCG in the semifinals (of the 2015 World Cup)," Smith said about his 93-ball 105 as Australia piled up 328/7 en route to a 95-run victory on March 26, 2015.
"It was a pretty big game and it was good to get a big score there. I think we lost a wicket pretty early. I was able to form a partnership with (Aaron) Finch. I will say that's probably one of better one-day hundreds in a big occasion."
Captain Smith is only 42 matches old and is still learning.
"I think you're always learning. You are trying to evolve and just keep trying to get better. You can never be satisfied. You want to be the best you can. Yes, I have learnt a lot along the way but there's always so much more to learn and get better at as well," he concluded.
'We've got talent to challenge India'
Kolkata: Australia captain Steve Smith backed his teammates to deliver and said that the visitors have enough talent at their disposal to challenge India in the remaining games of the ongoing five-match ODI series. Australia did not have the best of start to the tour as they lost by 26 runs via Duckworth-Lewis method in the rain- curtailed first ODI in Chennai last Sunday. Smith believes the world champions have a quality squad to bounce back in the series. "Obviously, the other day it was more like a T20 game for us, especially while we were batting. I think if we had 50 overs, the guys would have a chance to get into their groove and play with the right tempo," Smith said on the eve of the second ODI at the Eden Gardens on Thursday.