• Aggressive New Zealand will perish against speed demons in first Test, warns Steve Smith

    Date: 2019.07.19 | Category: 老域名 | Tags:

    Steve Smith has warned New Zealand’s batsmen they will meet a swift demise if they fight fire with fire against Mitchell Starc and Mitchell Johnson in the first Test.

    Australia will unleash a pair of left-arm speed demons, who teammates say are breaking the 150km/h barrier, on one of the fastest wickets in world cricket. But the Black Caps are not deviating from the attacking style that has lifted Kiwi cricket out of the doldrums.

    Starc’s trail of destruction this year, particularly in the 50-over game, has not gone unnoticed by visiting captain Brendon McCullum, who rates the quick as one of the most feared bowlers in the game.

    Smith endured a torrid net session at the Gabba on Tuesday where Starc troubled one of the world’s premier batsmen with his swing and pace.

    “It’s certainly been hard work facing him in the nets,” the Australian captain said.

    “He’s presenting a pretty similar seam, some balls were swinging back late, some were going across, that’s extremely hard to face when they’re coming down at 150 km/h as well.

    “If he can do that out here this week we can expect a lot of the same results he’s been having over the last couple of weeks.”

    The Black Caps were lauded by Sir Richard Hadlee for their high-risk brand of play but Smith claimed their World Cup capitulations with the bat against Australia gave the hosts a mental edge.

    “The two games we played in the World Cup, we got 10 wickets twice, for 150 and 180,” Smith said.

    “We know how they play, a lot of them will come out and play their shots, which will play into our hands nicely.”

    Starc is the world’s No.1 one-day international bowler but is yet to transfer that to the five-day game, but Smith has no doubt he can also be a force in Test cricket.

    “With Mitchell, one thing I’ve been most impressed with is when the ball’s not doing anything he’s found a way to make sure he’s getting the ball across the right-hander and building a bit of pressure – that’s going to be a real key for us if it’s not swinging,” Smith said.

    “If it is, what he’s been doing really well is swinging the ball late, at pace and hitting the stumps.”

    The Black Caps are expecting Australia to use Starc, whose bouncer/yorker combination has been near unplayable recently, as a strike weapon against incoming batsmen.

    “Where he sits in world cricket, he’s probably one of the most feared bowlers,” McCullum said.

    “But if you want to win in Australia … you don’t expect people to hand it to you.

    “You’ve got to expect to play against good players and some of the best players in the world and you have to find a way to counter that.

    “I’m pretty confident our guys will play well and if we are beaten then we’ll make it bloody tough for them to do so.”

    Hadlee, his country’s finest player and a New Zealand Cricket board member, said the Black Caps were exciting to watch under McCullum’s leadership.

    “It’s attacking, aggressive, proactive, particularly from McCullum, the way he sets fields and changes his bowlers,” Hadlee said.

    “At times [it’s] high risk but with that risk are great rewards.”

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