India got the better of Steve Smith in the Melbourne Test, dismissing the prolific batsman for a low scores. Former Australia batsman Michael Hussey feels the Men In Blue are using a 'good tactic' by targeting his stumps.
Ravichandran Ashwin dismissed Smith for a duck on the first day by getting him caught at leg slip. The Indian off-spinner certainly seems to have the measure of the Australian run machine as he dismissed him for one even in the Adelaide Test.
Michael Hussey thinks the Indians are targeting Steve Smith's stumps by placing a leg-side field and it has paid rich dividends so far in the series. Speaking to Fox Sports, Hussey said-
''There’s definitely been a shift from this Indian team. In the past, because Steve Smith walks across the crease so much, teams have bowled wide to him, and with that, they set a more off-side field and hope he’s going to hit the ball through there.' But I think this Indian team have gone the other way. They know his strength is off the pads, so they’ve put fielders there to block up the runs but then bowled straight at the stumps, so he just has to miss one or edge one – he is human and can get something wrong – and unfortunately it has worked.''
''I think it is a good tactic because if he is taking all of his weight across the crease, sometimes you can fall over a little bit too much and means you’re prone to LBW or your head isn’t in line with the ball, and you can flick one on the leg side,” Hussey added.
Steve Smith's record against India in Tests
Steve Smith was expected to fire in the ongoing series. Discounting today's duck, the 31-year-old has scored 1431 runs against India in 11 Tests, including four fifties and seven centuries. However, the Australian has barely troubled the scorers in the current series as the Indian team seem to have done their homework on Smith.Published 26 Dec 2020, 11:09 IST