‘Is he conventional? No!’- Jonty Rhodes defends his criticism of Steve Smith’s batting style in unique way
Former South Africa cricketer Jonty Rhodes on Tuesday picked Virat Kohli as the better Test batsman over Steve Smith in an interview to New Indian Express. “I enjoy watching Virat Kohli. Steve Smith, with that action and technique, makes the ugliest hundreds I have ever seen but the man just keeps scoring runs.Someone who likes to watch cricket would want to say ‘Wow! What an amazing shot’ as opposed to ‘Oh! How on earth can he hit that?’ So Virat Kohli right now,” Rhodes had said.
His criticism of Smith’s batting style prompted strong reactions from Twitter, who were quick to criticise the former batsman for ‘demeaning’ Smith. “You may not like Steve Smith but don’t demean his batting by saying he makes ‘ugly’ hundreds!! He is the best in a very long time. Don’t understand what is ugly about his batting,” a Twitter user wrote.
Rhodes, in reaction to the tweet from the user, went a step further and said that Smith makes ‘ugle double hundreds’. “Sorry, u are correct, should mean he makes ugly double hundreds. My batting was once described by a commentator as “someone trying to catch confetti with a bucket in swirling mist”!” he wrote in a tweet on Wednesday.
The 50-year-old further added that despite his unconventional style, Smith is effective. “Is he conventional? No! Is he effective? 100% Man is a run scoring machine,” he said.
Smith smashed 774 runs in seven innings at the ongoing Ashes series, at an average of 110.57 in the series, with three tons and three fifties. He also surpassed Virat Kohli to cement top position in ICC Test batting rankings.