T20 World Cup: Steve Smith ready to sacrifice his batting position for the team, says ‘I’ll slide down the order for strong boys to go and attack’

Australia batter Steve Smith on Tuesday said that he is clear about his job in the team and also put focus on what he is expected of. Smith said that he will unhesitantly slide down the order for the ‘strong boys’ in the team to go an attack. Smith batted at No. 4 position and contributed with a handy knock of 35 (34) in Australia’s opening game of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup against South Africa on Saturday.

Smith said that when the situation arises and the top order gives a good start he will have no problem batting down the order. “..if our top order do go well the likelihood is I’ll slide slightly down the order and let our big strong boys go out and attack it. Think I’ve done it pretty well in the first couple of trial games and our first game,” ESPNcricinfo quoted Smith as saying.

Smith further added that his basic job is to bail the team out of trouble if the top order fails. “It’s a little bit different to what I’ve played previously, but my job basically is to fix it if our top order don’t come off,” he said.

As the game against South Africa was a low-scoring encounter, Smith said that the wickets are scrappy and the teams will have to adapt to the conditions.

“Even throughout the IPL, there was a lot of really scrappy cricket, not huge scores, which made the games pretty interesting and quite close. Slightly different to a lot of T20 cricket, quite often it’s flat wickets and big scores, so you have to change slight ways you play and adapt according to what’s required on that surface. It’s been interesting so far.”

“Don’t think the other day 120 was indicative of the surface. Both teams bowled and fielded really well and probably didn’t bat very well but do think we’ll see plenty of scrappy cricket in this tournament,” added the 32-year-old.

After limiting South Africa to a below-par total, Australian openers too fell quickly. However, Smith managed to score 35 runs from 34 balls, but he fell before his side got over the line, and in the end, it was Marcus Stoinis and Matthew Wade who took Australia past the finishing line.

“Think you need ability to get off strike, manipulate the ball to certain areas more than just the power. Some of these wickets even the powerful blokes have struggled to hit sixes so you need some smarts about you, playing the situation, and having the ability to limit dot balls,” said Smith describing his knock.

Now, in Australia vs Sri Lanka encounter on Thursday, the team will be expecting a bit more intensity from Smith to allow the lower-middle-order batters to play their natural game.