A look at Steve Smith over the years
Steve Smith has transformed himself into the world's best batsman in Test cricket. The run-machine has grown like a phoenix over the years and that has helped Australia set the tone in the most important phases. When you look at Smith's trajectory, he grew in stature since 2013. And the Aussie star never looked back. Here's more on Smith over the years.
Smith and his foray into the Test side
Smith played at number eight in his debut Test series against Pakistan in 2010. He was promoted to number six against England in The Ashes that year. However, after the last Ashes Test in Sydney in January 2011, Smith had to wait for two years in order to make a comeback to the Test team. In his first five Tests, Smith amassed two fifties.
Smith returns in 2013, smashes maiden ton
In 2013, Smith returned to play against India in Mohali. He gave everyone the indication of his attributes with a splendid 92. Post that series, he featured in 10 consecutive Ashes Tests in England and Australia respectively. It was his 138* at The Oval in the fifth Ashes Test in England that saw him register his maiden Test hundred. It was his 12th Test.
2014 sees the start of Smith's heroics
Despite a slow start to his Test career, that hundred at The Oval revolutionized Smith. In the return Ashes series at home, Smith got going with two baby hundreds in Perth and Sydney. Post the 2013-14 Ashes, he struck another ton against South Africa this time. Smith got some decent scores throughout the year which helped him show consistency for the Aussies.
Smith's new level during 2014-15 Test series against India
The 2014-15 Test series against India at home was the beginning of Smith's dominance in Test cricket. That's where everything changed. He smashed four hundreds in four successive Tests to highlight his authority. And these were big hundreds. 2015 was grand for Smith as he got 199 against the Windies and then a double century against England during The Ashes.
Smith's most defining moments in Tests
Apart from the brilliant Test series against India (769 runs), Smith's biggest moments came against England in 2017-18 Ashes series at home. He amassed 687 runs with a best of 239. That was bettered in Ashes 2019 as Smith hit 774 runs in seven innings. The middle order batsman has amassed 26 career Test tons at an average of 64.56. This is absolute dominance.
Smith is a real fighter: Our take
Smith missed 12 months of cricket due to the suspension for ball-tampering in March 2018. What makes him the real deal is his ability to fight. He came back stronger and showed the world why he is the best in business in terms of being a match-winner. His unorthodox batting style, shuffling across the stumps and weird ways of playing shots are indeed remarkable.