How to get Steve Smith out? Stuart Broad answers

Ahead of the first Ashes Test, England speedster Broad talks Smith’s weaknesses, his statistics and why the new ball is the best weapon to dismiss David Warner.

Smith — who already has 20 Test hundreds in his short seven-year career — is known for stitching partnerships and anchor an innings.   -  GETTY IMAGES

 

Australia skipper Steve Smith will be the main threat for England in the upcoming Magellan Ashes Series. Smith — who already has 20 Test hundreds in his short seven-year career — is known for stitching partnerships and anchor an innings. England speedster Stuart Broad is aware of Smith’s strengths and weaknesses.

“Obviously, we had plans for him in England (during the 2015 Ashes in the UK), but it was quite clear in England that if you don't get him out early he seems to get big scores, and probably even more so in Australia because the pitches stay flatter for a bit longer," Broad told cricket.com.au in Adelaide on Wednesday.

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"You hear all sorts of theories from people, particularly before the last Ashes series — bowl straight at him, try to hit his leg stump, come around the wicket to him, bowl yorkers — leg stump, have five (fielders) on the leg side. But I don't think his stats suggest that he gets out leg-before and bowled very often, unless the pitch is going up and down,” added Broad, who studied his scoring areas too. "He's got huge scoring areas from straight, so I think we have to look for his outside edge up until about day three and then, if the pitches start going slightly up and down or crack like the Gabba can do; that can bring the leg-before in.

But Broad believes if there is bounce, it will be better to steal an edge off Smith rather than wait for his foot movement.

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Broad also knows that he wouldn’t be able to generate the same swing and seam, like the last Ashes in England, which fetched him an 8/15 at Trent Bridge. "I'm not going to swing it here.”

"I look through all my heroes like Glenn McGrath and he's not a swing bowler, you've got to hit the pitch hard, like a Josh Hazlewood.

"If you're six-foot six (inches), you hit the pitch hard, you get length, and if you get a nibble either way you're bringing the stumps and the (bat) edge in. If I look to swing it, I bowl too full, I bowl floaty and I'm crap — I know that,” he confessed.

But the right-arm bowler has learnt his lesson from the opening tour game.

Broad also revealed that the new ball is the best weapon to get David Warner out. "I think Warner, you have to try and bowl a lot of balls at him with the new ball because it's your best chance of getting him out, but if he gets in, you can't do what Pakistan did in Sydney last year (when Warner scored a century before lunch on day one)," Broad recalled.

"I was watching that in a park in Hobart, and he just keep going and going so you need to have a plan B and with someone like Warner, you have to (implement) plan B a lot quicker than with a lot of other batters. He's one of those blokes that is not that enjoyable to play against, but if he's in your team you love him because he always drives your team forward,” he added.

The first Test begins at the Gabba, Brisbane from November 23.

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