Ashes 2017: England pacer Stuart Broad says their plans against Steve Smith and the Australians are working

Allowing Steve Smith to score an unbeaten century might not seem like ‘mission accomplished’ for an opposing team’s bowlers, but paceman Stuart Broad believes England have Steve Smith right where they want him in the series-opening Ashes Test.

Reuters, Nov 26, 2017 09:31:43 IST

Brisbane: Allowing the home captain to score an unbeaten century might not seem like ‘mission accomplished’ for an opposing team’s bowlers, but paceman Stuart Broad believes England have Steve Smith right where they want him in the series-opening Ashes Test.

Smith strolled off the Gabba with 141 after tea on day three, having pushed his team to 328 and a slender lead over England’s first innings 302.

Steve Smith celebrates after bringing up his 21st Test century as Stuart Broad looks on. Reuters

Steve Smith celebrates after bringing up his 21st Test century as Stuart Broad looks on. Reuters

England then lost two wickets to be 33 for two and leave an enthralling Test match still very much in the balance.

Having had to soak up 326 balls in his slowest-ever century, Smith later said he was surprised at how defensive England captain Joe Root had set his fields and that he expected boundaries to be hard to come by further down the track.

All part of the plan, said Broad.

“Perfect. We know the Australians like to score quickly, if we can restrict them from scoring a lot of boundaries then we’ll have periods of taking wickets,” the wily paceman told reporters.

“The less balls we can bowl at Steve Smith, the more balls we can bowl to batsmen at the other end, and the better for us.”

”It must have been one of his slowest hundreds he’s scored for Australia.

“We didn’t let them get away from us at any stage and we’ve seen as a batting group, if someone shows a lot of patience and gets stuck in, it can be quite hard to get them out.”

Australia’s Josh Hazlewood removed Alastair Cook for seven and James Vince for two, but England’s rookie opener Mark Stoneman (19 not out) and Root (five not out) survived a nervous period before stumps.

The pair were peppered by short balls from Australia’s vaunted pace trio and Root took a sickening blow on the helmet from spearhead Mitchell Starc.

The captain smiled immediately in response, even if dizzy and with ears ringing, and dug in with courage to remain unbeaten at stumps.

”Crucial,“ said Broad. ”You can so easily lose four-five wickets and that’s the Test match gone in those sessions.

”Obviously a bit disappointed to lose two wickets but as I said, it could have been a lot worse.

”It was just proper theatre wasn’t it, proper Test match cricket.

“Fast bowling, batsmen playing it well, a few blows being taken but tomorrow will be difficult.”

Updated Date: Nov 26, 2017 09:31:43 IST


World Cup 2019 Points Table

Team p w l nr pts
Australia 5 4 1 0 8
New Zealand 4 3 0 1 7
England 4 3 1 0 6
India 3 2 0 1 5
Sri Lanka 5 1 2 2 4
West Indies 4 1 2 1 3
South Africa 5 1 3 1 3
Bangladesh 4 1 2 1 3
Pakistan 4 1 2 1 3
Afghanistan 4 0 4 0 0





Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 3631 113
2 New Zealand 2547 111
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 3663 105
5 Australia 2640 98
6 Sri Lanka 3462 94
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 5720 124
2 India 5990 122
3 New Zealand 4121 114
4 South Africa 4647 111
5 Australia 4805 109
6 Pakistan 4107 93
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7365 283
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4196 262
4 Australia 5471 261
5 India 7273 260
6 New Zealand 4056 254