Mark Wood
Mark Wood [PC: Getty]

The 33-year-old England National Cricket Team express pacer Mark Wood has said that he tends to try harder when bowling to Steve Smith as he is always desperate to get the Australia star’s wicket.

The fourth Test of the ongoing Ashes 2023 series is currently underway at Old Trafford in Manchester. England have dominated the Test and look set to win and level the series 2-2, only if rain doesn’t play spoilsport.

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Meanwhile, England pacer Mark Wood, who has been the real difference maker in the marquee series, said that he is delighted to complete 100 wickets in Test cricket.

“Very proud moment, my family were in the crowd and I am delighted that I managed to get there. Feels like we have a good experience in the group and feels good to join an elite group of bowlers. I’m pleased I could get there but I hope I have a few more in the tank today,” Wood told BBC ahead of Day 4 of the Test match.

Speaking about his battle against Steve Smith, Mark Wood said that Smith is a great player and he gives his best when bowling to the modern-day batting great.

“We look at all the players, not just Steve Smith. Maybe with Smith, I try harder because he is such a good player, so you’re desperate to get his wicket. He’s a key player for their team, so you’re trying really hard to get rid of him. My first 20 balls to him are key, I’m trying to make an impact early and change the game for the team,” Wood said.

In the first innings of the fourth Test, Wood dismissed Steve Smith while in the second innings, he was at his aggressive best. Wood destroyed the Australian top-order with his bouncers and picked crucial wickets of Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith, and Travis Head, leaving the visitors reeling at 113/4 at stumps on Day 3.

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Also Read: AUS vs ENG: Mark Wood Has Rattled Australian Batters – Dinesh Karthik, Michael Atherton Praise The Pacer 

Stokes has asked me to bowl those short and sharp spells – Mark Wood

Mark Wood further said that his skipper Ben Stokes has asked him to bowl short and sharp spells and get crucial breakthroughs.

“Stokes has asked me to bowl those short and sharp spells and try to make something happen. He’s not worried about the runs I go for, just trying to attack. We sometimes try to keep it tight and then other times just attack,” Wood said.

Mark Wood added that he is pleased to complete 100 Test wickets considering his career has been filled with injuries.

“I wouldn’t look that far ahead at the minute, I was pleased I managed to get here, it’s a big tick for me. I have got a poor injury record but in these two games, I’ve given it everything I’ve got. Most importantly, we need to get over the line in this game. Big wickets to get here. Australia have got a big batting line up so if I get them, then we can look ahead,” he concluded.

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Sonanchal Gautam is the Assistant Content Manager at Cricketaddictor. He is a professional Wrestling and Hip-hop enthusiast.