Former Australian captain and the No.1 ranked Test batsman in the world Steve Smith has been picked as the ICC ‘Test cricketer of the decade’ in the apex body’s decade awards declared on Monday (December 28).
Smith, who made his debut against Pakistan back in 2010, racked up as many as 7040 runs during the time frame at an average of 65.79 which the help of 28 half-centuries and 26 hundreds.
“STEVE SMITH is the ICC Men’s Test Cricketer of the Decade 👏👏 🏏 7040 Test runs in the #ICCAwards period 🅰️ 65.79 average ➜ Highest in top 50
💯 26 hundreds, 28 fifties. Unique, relentless and unbelievably consistent 🙌 ” ICC wrote on its official Twitter handle.
It has been an incredible journey for Steve Smith thus far. Having initially selected in the Australian team as a potential successor to the legendary leg-spinner Shane Warne, the New South Wales cricketers transformed himself into a batting juggernaut and in many ways as a successor to Sir Donald Bradman.
Smith’s moment of reckoning as a batsman came during the 2013-14 Ashes at home where he showed first signs of what was to follow in succeeding years.
And, it was in the following summer that Steve Smith truly established himself as the next big thing in Australian cricket as he smoked the Indian attack to the tune of 700+ runs in 4 Tests with the help of 4 hundreds.
Smith continued his consistency in the format in demanding conditions in England and India in years that followed as he befuddled bowling attacks around the world with his unorthodox style-of-play.
🇦🇺 STEVE SMITH is the ICC Men’s Test Cricketer of the Decade 👏👏
🏏 7040 Test runs in the #ICCAwards period
🅰️ 65.79 average ➜ Highest in top 50
💯 26 hundreds, 28 fifties
Unique, relentless and unbelievably consistent 🙌 pic.twitter.com/UlXvHaFbDz
— ICC (@ICC) December 28, 2020
Smith was handed a one-year ban after he was found complicit in the 2018 ball-tampering scandal in Newlands. However, the champion batsman came back stunningly as he racked up as many as 774 runs in seven innings at an average of 110.57 with three fifties, two hundred, and a double-ton to help Australia regain the Ashes on English soil for the first time since 2001.
The former Australian captain, however, is currently undergoing a rare lean patch, having managed just 11 runs across four innings in the ongoing Border-Gavaskar Trophy.