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Patience The Key To Improvement - Smith

Steve Smith
Steve Smith says his improvement in form is down to being more patient at the crease
©REUTERS / Action Images

Australian batsman Steve Smith has attributed his new-found patience as the reason why his batting form has gone up a couple of notches.

He hit his fifth Test hundred, finishing day two of the first Test against India at 162 not out, as the hosts reached 517 for seven in their first innings on a rain-interrupted day at Adelaide Oval.

"At the start of my career, I probably wasn’t quite as patient as I am now," said Smith after the day’s play.

"I probably tried to play too many shots early on in the innings and that got me in trouble. That’s the way I want to go about my business, get my patience right then I will be able to get big runs. Today is a good example of that. Hopefully I will continue to do so.

"If I may say so, that is not my best innings. I think my hundred at Centurion against South Africa in those conditions was probably my best one so far in my book. But every century is special and I hope I will get some more this summer," he added.

When asked about the tribute he paid to Phillip Hughes, walking over to the painted 408 number on the turf after getting his hundred, the batsman said, "I had a bit of break when I was on 98 (because of rain). I thought if I got two more runs, I have to go there, and stick my bat and thank Hughesy for being with me out there."

Smith added 163 runs in 30 overs with Michael Clarke, who despite being hurt in his lower back and being in considerable pain, returned to continue batting from his overnight score of 60.

The Australian skipper went on to score his 28th Test hundred and was finally out for 128 runs towards the end of day’s play.

"He was keen to get out there and get some hits and it worked out well for him. There were a few shots that hurt him but he played beautifully under the circumstances," Smith said.

"I think he has been amazing over the last few days. It’s been tough for all of us.

"By spending that whole time by Hugey’s family side, just the strength and courage Clarke has showed to us, that is unbelievable. He must be mentally drained," he added.

Nearly four hours were lost due to rain and as a result play will start half an hour earlier on day three.

Their partnership put India under the pump as they scored at 5.36 runs per over through the truncated day, an innings’ run-rate of more than four per over, and Australia are now comfortably placed to put pressure on the visiting batsmen from day three.

"I think we have a good score on the board. We think we have to bowl well tomorrow.

"It’s one of those wickets where we need patience to get the wickets and all our bowlers know what to do. I expect some good fireworks from our bowlers," said the centurion.

"I am not too sure about the declaration. The skipper is going to sleep on it. Whether we come out to bat a little bit longer or straightway come out with the ball, we will see how it goes," Smith signed off.

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