Steve Smith, the former Australian captain has turned 33 on Thursday. One of the all-time Test greats, the former Australian captain was born on June 2, 1989, in Kogarah.
"I always punish myself when I don't get runs just as I treat myself with a chocolate bar at the end of the day when I get a hundred", says Steven Smith, an Australian batting legend who can stop time when he is on full song. When Steven debuted in the Australian colors back in 2010 at the mighty MCG, not many would have thought that he would later go on to become one of the greatest red ball batsmen the game has ever seen.
Soon after his debut, Smith earned the reputation of a leg spinner who could turn the ball decently and he continued to play this role for many years, but things changed pretty quickly for the former Australia captain and since then, the world has been trying to dissect his game and his batting technique continuously.
To many people's surprise, a batsman who batted all his life on numbers 7 & 8 in the domestic circuit completely turned his game around and now is an inevitable part of fab-4 that includes the likes of Virat Kohli, Kane Williamson & Joe Root.
Smith's selection in the 2010-11 Ashes series garnered a lot of eyeballs and the selection committee had to face a lot of flak considering how raw he was as an Aussie international player. When Smith first burst onto the scene, he was straightaway compared to the Aussie legend Shane Warne due to his boyish charm & his bowling action. What followed next is history.
In 2013 things changed pretty quickly for the former Aussie captain who impressed the leadership group with his batting skills. His technique & trigger movement caught the eyeballs of the team management.
On the flip side, many cricket purists just wrote him off due to his unorthodox batting style. Despite Australia being thrashed by England in that series, it was crystal clear that Cricket Australia was willing to invest in Smith 2.0 which in time was going to reap them some iconic results
As Smith tirelessly worked on his game, he continued to receive criticism from all parts of the cricketing fraternity. Come the 2015 Ashes series, Smith kept on piling runs in the form of impactful tons and the world just watched in awe. Australia's tour to India in 2017 was what cemented Steve Smith as one of the greats of the game.
How he batted on the turning tracks of the subcontinent was nothing less than a masterclass. Just when the world had started to see him as a successor to Don Bradman, things went downhill.
Riding high on the success of the 2017-18 Ashes victory under the leadership of Steven Smith when Australia toured South Africa all hell broke loose. Steven Smith along with his counterparts Cameroon Bancroft & David Warner was caught tampering with the ball, the infamous "Sandpaper Gate". Cricket Australia took this matter very seriously and immediately stripped Smith as the Australia captain. Smith along with his vice captain Warner was handed a ban that lasted for one year.
When the ban ended, Smith started from where he left. He batted for his team like a man on a mission and led them to a world cup semi-final. Soon the Ashes followed and Smith was just poetry in motion and was later adjudged as the "Man of Tournament". Steven Smith will go down as one of the greats of the game and this story of redemption is what the generations to come will remember for a very very long time.