Smith's act was against the spirit of the game: Waugh

Smith's act was against the spirit of the game: Waugh

Steve Waugh on Wednesday described Steve Smith's “brain fade” moment against the spirit of the game and believed the young Australian captain would learn his lesson from it.

While Waugh, among Australia's most successful captains, called for the incident to be investigated, he was was also willing to believe Smith on face value.

“It was a great match, lot of ups and downs which is the hallmark of Test cricket,” said Waugh at the sidelines of Royal Stag Barrel Select Perfect Strokes’ event.

“It’s a shame that we are focusing on just one incident from the four days of a great contest. When Smith says he had suffered a ‘brain-fade’ and that it was not premeditated, I would take it for face value. Kohli said what he had to say, he has his opinion and we have ours.”

“It has to be investigated. It needs to come into finality quickly before the next Test match as it’s not good to be talking about this. We need someone from the ICC level to make the decision. I am sure Smith would be embarrassed by the moment. It was a high intensity match and both captains were playing under a lot of pressure. In pressure situations captains can lose focus.”

“The good thing about the whole incident was that the umpires stepped in and made the decision straightaway. And that is where it should have stopped. Whatever the outcome of this is, Smith would have learnt a lesson. Obviously, he shouldn’t have done that and it’s not in the spirit of the game.”

Asked whether Kohli went overboard with his on-field antics, Waugh said: “Aggression is what makes Virat Kohli. When he thought the team's morale was low, he pumped up the crowd to get behind the team and that is what makes him an exciting prospect. I don't mind when you rev up the crowd in between balls but not when the bowler is running into bowl. I am not sure Australians will be too happy about that.

Waugh also backed the statement from Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland supporting Smith. “I would expect that. At the same time, James Sutherland would have also realised what happened was wrong and shouldn't happen again and I am sure wouldn't happen again,” he said.

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