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Steven Smith rues batting failure for defeat in Kolkata ODI

Steven Smith (right) scored a half-century in the second ODI at Eden Gardens
Steven Smith (right) scored a half-century in the second ODI at Eden Gardens

Australia captain Steven Smith has slammed the batting collapse for the defeat to India in the second One-Day International in Kolkata.

Chasing a target of 253 runs in challenging conditions, Australia lost both their openers Hilton Cartwright and David Warner for just one each to Bhuvneshwar Kumar following which Smith and Travis Head counter-attacked the Indian attack with a 76 run stand.

However, once the spinners Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav were introduced, the batting looked completely out of sorts as they lost five wickets in a span of 42 runs with the left-arm-wrist spinner even claiming a hat-trick.

This was not the first time they suffered a batting collapse as even in the first game in Chennai they failed to chase down the revised target of 164 runs in 21 overs and Smith is desperate to address the issue.

"It’s happening a bit too often for my liking, to be honest with you, in all forms of cricket,” Smith told reporters.

"We’ve had a lot of collapses and we need to stop.

"The guys have trained really well and it’s now about getting out in the middle and executing your skills when you’re under pressure and not panicking.

"I think we panicked last game a little bit and in this game, we just couldn’t get the partnerships. We’re making silly errors when we’re under pressure."

The only positive in their batting was the efforts of Marcus Stoinis, who remained unbeaten on 62 but could not quite take his team over the line as they fell short off the target by 50 runs.

Smith had high praises for Stoinis and urged the top order to be among the runs, if they are to avoid a series defeat.

“He didn’t panic, he was calm and he played good cricket shots,” Smith said.

”He was nice and positive with his intent. “We just needed someone else in the top four to go on and make a score.”

The third ODI is scheduled to be played in Indore on Sunday.

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