Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

Ex County Player Smith Makes History With Fourth Ton In Four Tests

Australian stand-in captain Steve Smith, who played Twenty20 cricket for Worcestershire in 2010, has created a slice of history during the fourth Test with Indian on his home ground in Sydney.

Smith became only the fifth Australian batsman to score four centuries in four successive Tests after Don Bradman, Neil Harvey, Jack Fingleton and Matthew Hayden.

But in world terms the 25-year-old has joined Bradman and South African all-rounder Jacques Kallis in becoming the third player to score hundreds in four consecutive Tests in the same series.

Smith experienced his spell at New Road shortly before going onto make his Test debut later that summer against Pakistan in a Test which was played at Lord's.

In those days he was regarded as a promising leg-spinner and talented batsman – but the bowling side of things has taken a back seat during the past couple of years.

Smith has scored 162 not out at Adelaide, 133 at Brisbane and 192 at Melbourne before making 117 in the current Test.

To date he has amassed 692 runs in the current series with one potential innings remaining.

Six of Smith's past seven first innings scores in Tests in Australia have been hundreds, the last three of those as captain.

It was record-breaking day all-round for Australia whose top six all scored 50 in an innings for the first time in Test cricket.

Australia amassed 572-7 before Smith declared and India reached 71-1 by the close.

He had reached three figures with a four off a full toss from Umesh Yadav. He said: "That's what you're after when you're on 98. It was another special moment to get a hundred on the home ground and my favourite place to play. 

"I think yesterday afternoon when I went in to bat they tried to get me out caught at leg slip again the way they got me in Melbourne, and I think that played into my hands.

"The ball was a little bit softer at that time and the wicket was a little bit slow. So I never felt like I was ever going to hit one there. That enabled me to get in and from there I felt pretty comfortable, so it worked well for me in the end.

"For us it was just about batting and batting time and reassessing at the lunch break. I thought our whole top six played very well.

"Before this Test match I said to the boys I wanted the batters to do the work this game. I think we've relied a lot on the tail the last couple of Test matches and I said the batters had to step up.

"The whole top six got above 50 which I don't think has ever happened before, if I'm right. That's outstanding for us."