Steve Smith's telling admission amid Aussie dramas at T20 World Cup

Steve Smith says he's ready to step up for Australia at the T20 World Cup in the event of any teammates being ruled out with injury. Pic: Getty
Steve Smith says he's ready to step up for Australia at the T20 World Cup in the event of any teammates being ruled out with injury. Pic: Getty

Steve Smith says he's ready to answer any injury-related SOS for Australia at the T20 World Cup, with three members of the starting XI battling hamstring issues.

Captain Aaron Finch, Marcus Stoinis and Tim David are all expected to have results from scans on their troublesome hamstring issues on Wednesday afternoon.

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The trio picked up the injuries during Australia's 42-run win over Ireland on Monday night, that kept hopes of progressing to the semi-finals of the tournament alive.

While Finch's hamstring concern appears to be the worst for the three Aussie players, the skipper said after the Ireland match that it "doesn’t feel too bad".

Smith is yet to feature for the Aussies at the World Cup but says he'll be ready to go if or when he's called upon.

The 33-year-old added that the way the tournament has panned out so far, really suits his style of play.

"Some of the wickets are doing quite a bit and you haven't seen those really big scores," Smith said.

"Guys like Virat (Kohli) in that game (against Pakistan) at the MCG just batted, and then took it on later on. That is the way I like to go about things.

"If things are difficult early, I have played Test cricket and one-day cricket so I have got the game to play in those difficult circumstances.

"The way the tournament has played out so far with the wickets, if you have got someone who is able to bat through a fair chunk of the innings and let the hitters go around them, that has worked pretty well.

"I certainly feel I can play that role."

Cameron Green is another option to come into the Australian side - particularly if Finch is ruled out - with the allrounder able to slot in alongside David Warner at the top of batting order.

Former Australia vice-captain Brad Haddin says the fact Green also offers Australia an added bowling option, makes him the "frontrunner" to come into the Australian side for Friday's match against Afghanistan.

Seen here, Cameron Green training with the Australia squad at the ICC Men's T20 World Cup.
Cameron Green trains with the Australia squad at the ICC Men's T20 World Cup. Pic: Getty

“This is going to be a real interesting selection because Afghanistan will be predominantly spin bowlers,” Haddin said on Triple M.

“You’ve got Rashid Khan and Mujeeb (Ur Rahman) who are their big X-factor players and Steve Smith does play spin better than anyone in the world, so do you go him in the middle order and move Stoinis up to the top because Marcus Stoinis at the moment he’s been dynamo. He’s playing a really aggressive game, he’s comfortable in his role in the middle so do you want to move him up the top?

“On the flip side you’ve got Cameron Green and we’ve seen Australia’s appetite to have him at the top of the order leading into this tournament.

“The obvious replacement to me is Green goes up, that gives you another bowling option. You’ve got three quicks, three medium pace all-rounders, so you’ve got options with the ball. So I’d imagine Green’s the frontrunner.”

Steve Smith has big-match experience

In Smith's favour is the fact he has a track record of performing at the pointy end of big tournaments, such as the 2015 ODI World Cup in Australia where his last five innings were scores above 50.

"I know when it gets to the pressure stages I like to think I go well in those situations," Smith added.

The former Aussie captain admits that allrounder Green is also a strong option to come in after his success at the top of the order on the recent tour of India.

Wicketkeeper Matthew Wade is set to captain the side if Finch is ruled out, as he has in the past and as he did when Finch left the field early in the innings against Ireland.

Australia will need to beat Afghanistan and possibly by a big margin, although England will likely take their spot in the semi-finals if they win their final match against Sri Lanka.

Smith concedes that the Aussies will need to be at their best against Afghanistan to give themselves the best chance of keeping their tournament alive.

"They have a pretty good bowling attack. We've seen (Fazalhaq) Farooqi up top swinging the ball both ways at good pace," he said.

"Rashid Khan is probably the best T20 spinner in the world and Mujeeb (Ur Rahman) bowls really well.

"They have a few batters that are dangerous and Adelaide is probably a good place for them with the shorter square boundaries."

with AAP

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