Smith spurred on by leadership faith

21 June 2013

Steve Smith

Steve Smith has been anointed a future leader in Australian cricket and the in-form batsman believes the extra responsibility will help him win back his spot in the Test team.

Smith will captain Australia A for their final match on the VB Tour of the British Isles and also on their tour of Africa starting in July.

The 24-year-old has played under the likes of Michael Clarke, Brad Haddin and Simon Katich for the duration of his career, but he credits Australian vice-captain Haddin with having had the biggest impact.

Unsatisfied with the way he started his Test career, Smith is a young player who has endured the disappointment of being dropped and has used it to analyse his game and grow.

Smith says he'll be inspired rather than burdened by the high hopes held for him by National Selector John Inverarity.

"Being a leader you've got to try and set the standard with every bit of the game," Smith told AAP.

"For me it's just going about trying to score runs and setting the example that way."

Smith says professionalism is the common trait shared by the great leaders he's played under.

However he's worked as Haddin's understudy during the current Australia A tour of the UK, and says communication is the main thing he's gleaned from the wicketkeeper.

"What he gets across to his players and how he gets the best out of them," Smith said.

"That's your main goal as a leader."

Smith, who scored 133 for Aus A against Ireland last start, said he hasn't been spoken to by selectors about coming into the Ashes as shadow for Clarke, should the skipper suffer further complications with his back.

But after proving himself with the bat in India in March when many didn't expect him to get a game, Smith knows he's capable of stepping up and performing on short notice.

Smith is noted as a fine player of spin, but says he's worked hard on succeeding against the seaming ball.

"I feel as though my game is in a good place at the moment," he said.

"I'm scoring runs and hopefully keep putting my name up there.

"I've tightened my technique up."