Former Australian Test skipper Steve Smith has rubbished a claim from fellow former skipper Ian Chappell that he was ‘white-anting’ Tim Paine in the second Test against Pakistan.
Chappell, while on commentary duty for Macquarie Sports Radio on Monday, noted that Smith appeared to be making some minor tweaks to Paine’s set field.
“I tell you what I don’t like to see, Steve Smith is moving a few fieldsmen around,” Chappell said.
“He did have a chat with Tim Paine, trying to talk Tim Paine into moving a fielder on the off-side, but I’m not sure Tim Paine moved him as far as Steve Smith wanted.”
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Smith though, was having absolutely none of it.
Speaking to Channel 9 on Tuesday, after Australia’s thumping win over Pakistan, Smith dismissed Chappell’s comments out of hand.
“I only try to help Tim as much as I can,” Smith told Channel 9.
“He’s doing a terrific job. I give him suggestions and things like that.
“I only want the team to do well, I’m certainly not undermining him.”
WA all-rounder shoots into Test contention
Australia's selectors have cast half an eye to the future with young allrounder Cameron Green already coming into Test discussions.
Green is expected to have scans this week to seek clearance on a return to bowling, after suffering back soreness earlier in the summer.
Australia have long been in search of an allrounder since Shane Watson's last Test in 2015.
Mitch Marsh has filled the role in an on-and-off basis but appears unlikely to be used as a fifth bowler this summer at the batter-friendly MCG, as he battles to return from a broken hand.
But 20-year-old Green could be an answer in the future.
He won the plaudits this week of former Australia captain Ricky Ponting, while Justin Langer was the man to give Green his Western Australia debut.
Green has hit two centuries in this summer's Sheffield Shield, with his 394 runs coming at an average of 65.66.