Sport Cricket Rodney Hogg: Smith, Marsh are Australia’s future

Rodney Hogg: Smith, Marsh are Australia’s future

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I’ve got to compliment the Australian cricket administrators for their appointment of Steve Smith as captain.

Usually they’re a pretty conservative bunch and they go with the norm, but I think on this occasion they’ve looked to the future of Australian cricket.

Brad Haddin’s only got a short time left in the game, and they handed out a captaincy to Shane Watson recently which was a mistake.

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They looked at Smith’s captaincy last year in the domestic competitions, and they’ve looked at his form.

His past seven hits for Australia in one-dayers and his past 10 hits in Tests have been exceptional. He’s gone up a level.

It’s a bit like the time they picked Richie Benaud – Neil Harvey was a long-time vice-captain but they went for Richie, who was a couple of years younger than Neil.

The future’s looking pretty bright with Dave Warner being so exciting, Mitchell Marsh has come on the scene and he looks like he’s going to be a star. I can see why they rushed him into the side – he looks frightening.

Why not let Smith take this side on a journey?

If anyone can get back, Michael Clarke can. Photo: Getty
If anyone can get back, Michael Clarke can. Photo: Getty

Meanwhile, I’m still shocked that Michael Clarke was trying to throw across his body – you’d think he would have been nursed through.

Fielding at mid-wicket, I thought, was very unusual.

We all hear that he’s one of the hardest workers the game has ever seen.

It doesn’t look encouraging, but if anyone’s going to get back it’s Michael Clarke.

It was a great finish to the Test. We needed to take eight wickets in a session to win it, and I’ve never seen that before.

But I don’t think India has the attack to trouble Australia. We declared both times, they took 12 wickets for the match.

Their attack, apart from Ishant Sharma, is pretty second rate.

It was a beautiful Test match, there were some great moments. But the bottom line is the Indian attack is pretty average, they’re an inexperienced side and there’s no way known they’ll beat us in this series.

In saying that, some of their batting was beautiful to watch. There’s a real future for that Indian batting line-up.

Their great players – Dravid, Sehwag, Tendulkar – have left the game, but from what we’ve seen here, we’ll have 10 years of watching some of those batsmen.

Nathan Lyon was under the pump a little bit, but the thing about him is he never gets overawed by things.

He could be a key man when the second Test gets underway on Wednesday in Brisbane.

He always seems calm and collected, he’s tried a few things. He’s gone round the wicket, he’s listened to the experts.

He’s worked hard on his game, and he’s a bloody good off-spinner for Australia.

He reaped the rewards and he won us a Test match. He’s taken 15 wickets in three Tests at the Gabba – he gets a bit of bounce up there.

And I’d expect Mitchell Johnson to come out with more vigour than we saw from him in Adelaide.

He wasn’t cherry ripe and was still dealing with what happened to Phillip Hughes.

Mitchell seemed to be lacking match practice going into that game, and the Gabba will give him more than Adelaide did.

He’ll make the Indians work a lot harder in this Test match.

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