Australia captain Steven Smith shielded the timing of his declaration on Tuesday as India held on for a draw in the 3rd Test in Melbourne. Australia set the travellers a 384 run win target after batting throughout the first session and declaring at lunch hour.
Ryan Harris and Shaun Marsh found difficult to score through much of the first session until Shaun went after fast runs to chase a ton before the declaration.
Steve Smith, who was doing the captaincy for Australia for a 2nd Test while Michael Clarke is wounded, was asked about his declaration call at his after-match press interview. He said that India have some very good batters in their side, the pitch did not break up at all, and it was still a very good pitch. But they did not want to give India a sniff of win.
They have got another series win, which is what Australians were after, and probably they can finish well in Sydney. Steve Smith said that he discussed with Coach Darren Lehmann and senior players, but in the end it was his call, and added that everyone was on the same page.
When he was asked about Australia’s wish to play belligerent and positive cricket, Smith said that they said they always play for clinching the victory, but it was one of those situations where India had a chance to take the new ball this first session as well. They did not do that so Australians thought they will just give him a few less overs to get these runs.
He also said that he thought they might have come out a little bit harder at the start and they might have got a few more wickets there. They have seen how the tail of India has gone recently. They have got through them quite quickly. It did not turn out that way, but they still got a series win, which is the most crucial thing for them.
Steve Smith said he trusted Australia failed to win the Test through their dropped catches in India’s 1st innings.
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