Talismanic Australian batter Steve Smith hopes to keep batting at the top of the order in T20 cricket after sizzling in the ongoing season of the Big Bash League (BBL). The veteran cricketer claimed to have performed decently when opening the batting in the Indian Premier League (IPL).
Smith has opened the innings five times combined for the Rajasthan Royals and Delhi Capitals, averaging 33.20 with two fifties and a promising strike rate of 138.33. However, he has batted the most at No. 3, where he averages 35.27 at a decent strike rate of 128.33 with eight half-centuries.
The right-handed batter reflected that opening the innings is ideal for T20s, given the field restrictions and the fact that batters can play their shots even after the powerplay once set. As quoted by ESPN Cricinfo, the 33-year-old said:
"I like it up top, who wouldn't want to open in T20 cricket? Two men out, it gives yourself a chance to just play the ball as you see it early on. And then once the fielders go out you've got yourself in and have the chance to play your shots. It's a place I enjoy batting. I did it a couple of times in the IPL and went okay. I'm not reading too much into it. I am just going out and playing and doing my best. We will wait and see what the future holds, it's a while until the next T20 international anyway."
The former Aussie captain started his BBL 2022 campaign with an impressive 27-ball 36 against the Perth Scorchers, followed by a blazing hundred against the Adelaide Strikers. It was the right-hander's second century in T20 cricket.
Steve Smith played only one game in the T20 World Cup 2022
12 months after becoming a T20 World Cup winner with Australia in the UAE in November 2021, Smith lost his place in the XI for the title defense at home to Tim David. With Australia preferring a line-up of power-hitters, the 33-year-old stayed on the sidelines for most of the tournament.
He played in Australia's last group-stage game against Afghanistan, but perished for four runs. With Aaron Finch unlikely to play in the 2024 T20 World Cup, Smith could partner David Warner at the top for the competition in the West Indies and USA.
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