Steve Smith
Steve Smith batting (Credits: X)

Pakistan, on Friday (January 5), executed a brilliant plan to trap Steve Smith, dismissing the Australian star on day three of the ongoing third AUS vs PAK Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

Marnus Labuschagne and Steve Smith began the proceedings with the bat on day three. Australia were on 116 for 2 at the start of the day’s play and the duo did well to stop Pakistan from claiming early breakthroughs. They took the score past the 150-run mark and were looking set to stitch a big partnership.

Faced with the challenge of the well-set Australian batters, Pakistan opted for an unconventional approach against Steve Smith. Shan Masood and his teammates strategically set up a trap right before the former Australia captain’s eyes, yet he succumbed to it and his reaction after being dismissed said it all.

Steve Smith falls into Pakistan’s trap:

In the 74th over, while facing Mir Hamza, Steve Smith found himself up against a strategic move by Pakistan who placed as many as three fielders in the covers region. The left-arm pacer bowled one outside the off stump, inviting the Australia star to go for a drive.

Steve Smith decided to take on Hamza but his decision backfired as he ended up hitting the ball straight into the hands of Babar Azam at short extra over. Disappointed with his shot, the right-handed batsman was seen shaking his head in disbelief.

Steve Smith departed after scoring 38 runs. Even before Australia could score any run after Smith’s departure, Marnus Labuschagne lost his wicket too. He was bowled by Agha Salman for 60. At the time of writing this report, Australia were on 289 for 6 at tea break. Travis Head also failed to do well with the bat and was out for 10.

After Smith, Labuschagne and Head departed in quick succession, in-form Mitchell Marsh and Alex Carey steadied the ship with an 84-run stand. Sajid Khan ended the stand by castling Carey at the stroke of tea break. Marsh is currently unbeaten on 50 while Carey lost his wicket for 38.

Earlier in the game, Pakistan recovered from 96 for 5 to post a competitive total of 313 runs. Pakistan have already conceded the three-match series after losing the first two games. They suffered a 360-run defeat in the first Test in Perth before losing the second one by 79 runs in Melbourne.