Tendulkar's in-depth analysis of Smith's Ashes 2019 strategy: Details here
Australian batsman Steve Smith had a dream Ashes 2019 series. The star cricketer scored a staggering 774 runs in seven innings. His heroics helped the Aussies retain the urn as the series ended 2-2. Smith, who won hearts with his unconventional style of batting and technique, has seen his approach get analysed by legend Sachin Tendulkar. Here's what Tendulkar had to show.
Smith started the series in a convincing fashion with scores of 144 and 142 in the first Test. He also scored a valiant 92 in the first innings of the second Test at Lord's. A bouncer from Jofra Archer felled Smith and he suffered a concussion to miss the second innings and the third Test as well. However, he returned with a majestic 211.
Many wonder how Smith manages to score all the runs in a consistent fashion with his style and technique. His adaptability is his biggest strength. Tendulkar explained on Twitter, how Smith's ability to adapt in order to face different challenges helps him. He also pointed out Smith adjusting his technique for facing bouncers after getting hit on the head.
Tendulkar highlighted that things were relatively easy for Smith in the first Test as he shuffled across to leave his leg stump exposed and playing accordingly. But at Lord's, Archer's short balls caused issues for Smith. Tendulkar explained how Smith was getting in the line of the ball but a little bit on the back foot. He was getting into bad positions consistently.
Smith came back and got runs. He managed to change his technique and the ploy worked. "What Smith started doing in the fourth and fifth Test was leave the ball by bending forward rather than leaning backwards. So his head was going forward and whenever Archer tested him with short-pitched stuff, he was leaving the ball with his front shoulder dropping forward," said Tendulkar.
"The most important factor that I noticed was, he stopped moving his left foot whenever there was a leg slip in place. That way he was always guarding his leg stump, which wasn't the case earlier," opined Tendulkar in his video on Twitter.