It goes without saying that Marnus Labuschagne and Steve Smith are among the key players in Australia’s batting order and their performance with the willow, to a large extent, determines the fate of the Australian cricket team. Batting at No 3 and No 4, both have an unorthodox style of play, can bowl leg-spin, share common interests, and thus, they gel along very well both on and off-field.
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Ahead of the SCG Test against India, Steve Smith spoke about his bond with colleague Marnus Labuschagne, saying that they get along very well but can’t term it as a bromance.
“I don’t know if it is a bromance between me and Marnus. We do get on well and love talking about the game. We think about the game fairly similarly. We share a common interest with coffee making and latte art,” said Smith in a video posted by 7Cricket on their official Twitter handle.
As far their on-field bromance is concerned, especially in Tests, the duo of Smith and Labuschagne has stitched a partnership of 617 runs in 10 innings, averaging 61.70 with three hundreds and a couple of fifties. Though they haven’t been able to get those runs on board in the ongoing series, they individually have pretty daunting numbers at SCG.
Averaging over 67, Smith has compiled an exact 611 runs in 7 Tests with two hundreds, including scores of 117 and 71 against India during the fourth Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy in 2014-15. Meanwhile, Labuschagne has aggregated 312 runs in 3 innings, comprising his highest Test score in an innings (215) against New Zealand in the final Test of the 3-match series at the beginning of 2020.
Steve Smith and Marnus Labuschagne shadow bat next to each other in hotel rooms: Nathan Lyon
Australian pacer Pat Cummins confirmed the bromance between Smith and Labuschagne and that they share a weird dynamic.
“I can absolutely confirm the bromance between Marnus and Smith. It is a weird dynamic. I am glad they found each other. You will see them go for coffee and get their salad bowls,” added Cummins.
Off-spinner Nathan Lyon too chipped in on this topic, stating that it’s Smith who loves Marnus, and further added that the duo like to shadow bat next to each other in the hotel rooms.
“Smith and Marnus obviously have a bromance. But everyone thinks it is Marnus who loves Smith, but I am actually going the other way. I think Smith loves Marnus a lot more. It is pretty weird how they shadow bat next to each other in the hotel rooms.” said Lyon.
Meanwhile, hosts Australia will be geared up to take on India in the third Test at SCG starting January 7 in what promises to be another cracker of a match for the fans to witness.
The Tim Paine-captained side started the 4-match series on a winning note, beating India by 8-wickets in the day-night Test at Adelaide Oval, but couldn’t carry the momentum heading into the MCG Test. With opener David Warner and young Will Pucovski joining the team for the highly anticipated Test, one could expect the Aussies to get back on their winning ways.
Team India, on the other hand, will once again eye to put their peak show in SCG, as was exhibited by them in the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne that they won comfortably by a margin of eight wickets.
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