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After the first Test between Australia and South Africa ended within two days, Steve Smith believes that the pitch at the Melbourne Cricket Ground will have much more to offer. The first Test took place at The Gabba in Brisbane, and test specialist Steve Smith revealed that the Gabba green-top was the hardest pitch he encountered in Australia.
A total of 34 wickets fell in just six sessions of the game and the match concluded way early, in favor of Australia who won the game by six wickets. The first Test turned out to be the shortest test match on Australian Soil in 91 years. While everyone expected the series opener to be a rollercoaster, it turned out to be the opposite.
“As a batter I’d like it to do a little bit less. I think it’s a fine balance just trying to get that even contest between bat and ball. It [the Gabba] was probably the most difficult wicket I’ve played on here in Australia,” Smith was quoted by ESPNCricinfo.
It certainly wasn’t easy to bat: Smith
South African skipper Dean Elgar was very disappointed with how the pitch turned out and criticised the field as dangerous during the post-match press conference. He even revealed that he went on to question the umpires during the game as to whether the pitch would be ruled unsafe to play. Smith too said that there were times when he was caught off guard.
“I think there were a few instances that the ball did some stuff that was just out of nowhere. Some balls were sitting in the wicket, making divots, some were zinging through and it was just incredibly hard to bat again. Whether it was unsafe or not, it’s not really my place to judge, but it certainly wasn’t easy to bat,” he added.
The ICC rated the Gabba pitch as ‘below average’ after witnessing how the game panned out and match referee Richie Richardson went on to say that it was ‘not an even contest between bat and ball’. Both sides will now be focusing on the second Test, the boxing day Test, which is set to start on December 26 at the MCG.
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