Steve Smith is delighted with his performance against England in first ODI

Australia extinguished the disappointment of the T20 World Cup by dismantling the recently crowned champions in the first ODI of the three-match series at the Adelaide Oval. Dawid Malan starred for the visitors with a glittering ton, only for David Warner and Travis Head to make a mockery of his efforts in the second innings. However, the former Australian skipper Steve Smith compiled a brisk unbeaten 80, an innings he feels ‘was close to perfection’.

England’s total felt like a modest one after Aussie openers David Warner and Travis Head put together a breathtaking opening partnership. Australia had a minor scare after losing quick wickets in the middle overs before batting ace Steve Smith put up his hands for the home side. Smith amassed 80 runs in just 78 deliveries, playing some eye-catching shots to guide Australia home.

Smith’s place in the Australian white-ball side was under threat after he featured in just one match in the recently concluded T20 WC. However, his latest blitz with the bat showcased the abilities he possesses in the longer formats of the game and could possibly be their key player for the upcoming 50-over WC in India next year.

“[It] was probably the best I’ve felt in about six years. I was just in really nice positions and I felt really good, I honestly haven’t felt that way in six years or so. It’s been nice to score some runs in that time and we’re always looking for perfection, and for me yesterday was as close to perfection as I will get,” Smith told reporters after the first ODI.

The tenacious batter shed light on the nuances of his batting technique after the win against nemesis England. He revealed the changes he made in his batting stance and hand positions in the last year or so to get more out of his time at the crease.

“I’ve been working on a few things, it’s almost been a six-month or 12-month process. At the start of last summer, I tried to get my hands back to where they were in 2015. I feel like I’m staying a bit more side-on now and I’ve got my feet and hands in sync together. Hopefully, it’s the start of a big summer,” Smith added.