Smith walked into bat with Australia at 86/2 in the 34th over and a while later, shared a rather unpleasant conversation with Anderson. Pakistani umpire Aleem Dar who was standing at the non-striker’s end, metres away from the sparring players, intervened and diffused the situation without much ado.
Before the start of the second Test match, Anderson called raised questions about the tactics of the Australians, while Smith retorted saying the fast bowler was ‘one of the biggest sledgers.’
The hostility and ill-tempered behaviour though has not been a topic of disciplinary action as the umpire did not report it.
Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland also played down the incident and interactions of the kind calling it “a little bit of what I would call banter".
"I don't know the specific details but I noticed Aleem Dar was right in the middle of it at times, and he didn't make any reports or anything like that," Sutherland told Grandstand.
"My observations were it was probably a frustrating day for everyone being on and off the field, and it was a bit slow at times, but we got to see the two leaders of the England attack wanting to perhaps step up the pressure."
The ‘banter’ though has not been restricted to just the two current squads, as in the lead up to the Adelaide Test, former England batsman Kevin Pietersen also had unpleasant exchange with the Australian Mitchell Johnson, which resulted in the swashbuckling batsman blocking the pacer on social media.
First Published: December 3, 2017, 4:38 PM IST