New Test skipper Smith vows to be bold

The internship was impressive but Steve Smith wants to be bolder when he takes full control of Australia’s Test side.

Smith broke Don Bradman’s record for most runs in a Test series between Australia and India last summer, when he stepped in as skipper following Michael Clarke’s hamstring surgery.

Clarke will lead the side in next week’s fifth Ashes Test then retire, with Smith poised to become captain for the October tour of Bangladesh.

The 26-year-old boasts an undefeated record in his three Tests as captain, but draws in Melbourne and Sydney still irk.

Instead of pressing for victory in the Boxing Day Test, Smith accepted a draw knowing it would wrap up a series victory.

The decision was made with thoughts of how emotional the fourth Test would be, when players competed at the SCG for the first time since Phillip Hughes’ death.

A flat pitch in Sydney then scuppered hopes of a win, despite Australia being on top for all five days.

“The two games that we drew I could probably be a bit more aggressive there and give ourselves more of a chance to bowl the opposition out,” Smith said.

“But in regards to my captaincy I think it’ll (otherwise) be pretty similar.”

Smith spoke about the prospect of taking over from Clarke with hushed excitement.

He pointed to the fact nothing was official until the board made it so and how important it was to send Clarke out on a high note at The Oval.

Smith, surrounded by old hands for so much of his international career, steps into a leadership vacuum.

In addition to Clarke’s resignation, Chris Rogers is set to retire while Brad Haddin and Shane Watson’s careers could be over.

“It’s a lot of responsibility,” Smith said.

“Bangladesh is gong to be quite a tough tour.

“There is a possibility there could be some changes and some younger guys coming in.

“That’s really exciting for Australian cricket.”

Smith, a student of the game for as long as he can remember, captained NSW and the Sydney Sixers before leading the national side.

The right-hander noted he’d learned plenty about the post from Clarke, considered one of the great tacticians of the modern game.

Although there hasn’t been a handover note yet.

“There was none of that,” Smith said.

“I’m sure he’ll always be there for some support if I need it.

“It’s nice to be able to talk to him (during games) and learn different ways as to how we’re trying to get the batters out and thinking ahead of the present.

“That’s pretty important as a captain and something that he’s done really well, and something I’ve been able to learn off on the job.”

Coach Darren Lehmann is confident the captaincy won’t impact Smith’s batting and the first drop agreed.

“Every game I’ve captained so far I’ve scored a hundred. I’d like that record to keep going, hopefully it does,” he said.

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