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India vs Australia: 'Shocked and Disappointed' - Steve Smith Denies Scuffing Rishabh Pant's Batting Mark

Steve Smith was caught on the stump camera first shadow batting and then seemingly scuffing the marks on the crease which batsmen make to indicate where the stumps are.

India vs Australia: 'Shocked and Disappointed' - Steve Smith Denies Scuffing Rishabh Pant's Batting Mark

The third Test between India and Australia at Sydney, which ended in a thrilling draw thanks to the batting heroics of Hanuma Vihari and Ravichandran Ashwin, featured quite a few sub-plots during the course of the game. One of the more controversial on-field ones was when former Australia captain Steve Smith was caught on the stump camera first shadow batting and then seemingly scuffing the marks on the crease which batsmen make to indicate where the stumps are. However, Smith has now spoken out about the incident and revealed what exactly it is he was doing on the final day of the Test.

Saying that he was 'shocked and disappointed' at the reaction to his behaviour, Smith noted that it was something he has done in the past to visualise how opposition batsmen are approaching their bowling.

"I have been quite shocked and disappointed by the reaction to this," Smith told the Daily Telegraph.

Australian Skipper Tim Paine Defends Steve Smith on Crease Scuffing Issue

"It’s something I do in games to visualise where we are bowling, how the batter is playing our bowlers and then out of habit I always mark centre."

Australia skipper Tim Paine had also defended Smith's actions, saying the batsman has a number of unusual quirks that he indulges in during matches and this was just one of them.

"I have spoken to Steve about it," Paine told reporters on Tuesday. "He is really disappointed with the way it has come across.

Brad Hogg Criticises Steve Smith for Scuffing Rishabh Pant’s Batting Mark

"If you watch Steve Smith play Test cricket that is something he does every single game five or six times a day. He does this a lot.

"He is always in the batting crease batting. As we know he has those many Steve Smith quirks. One of them is that he was always marking centre. He was certainly not changing (Pant’s) guard.

"I imagine if he was the Indian players would have kicked up a bit of a stink at the time. I have seen Steve do it many times in Tests and games I have played against him.

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"He likes to visualise how he is going to play. Yesterday you could see him up there playing shots as a left-hander to where he wanted Lyono to pitch the ball."

The final Test of the series begins on Friday (January 15) at Brisbane.



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