A young man in a hurry, Steve Smith says a lack of patience has been his downfall in the Ashes.
Smith posted his maiden double-century to guide Australia to a 405-run victory at Lord’s in the second Test.
It’s otherwise been slim pickings – for Smith and his side.
The 26-year-old has surrendered the world No.1 ranking on the ICC’s Test batting charts, with his past four scores being in single figures.
“They make you earn your runs … all of their bowlers swing the ball both ways,” Smith said.
“The learnings are just about trying to get yourself in. Be really patient at the start of your innings.
“In Australia we’re taught to play out in front a little bit more. You have to really wait for the ball here in England.”
Stuart Broad questioned whether Smith’s technique would stand up to a hooping Dukes ball pre-series.
Smith’s unorthodox approach wasn’t to blame for his recent failures, but the right-hander is trying to tweak one element of his approach at the crease.
“To get my weight going forward,” he said.
“That’s something I’m trying to work on with my technique.
“It’s something that is pretty crucial here in England on the slower wickets as well.”
Take for example his second-innings dismissal in the fourth Test, which Shane Warne described as horrific.
Alastair Cook and Stuart Broad made no secret of their approach at Trent Bridge, bowling a wide line and daring Smith to drive.
Smith reached out and stroked one ball to the rope, but his next attempt was slapped straight to Ben Stokes at cover-point,
“If you get a loose ball, you have to hit it,” Smith said.
“It was there to hit for four, I just didn’t execute it well.
“My weight was a bit back, looking back at it.”
Smith predicted pre-series that if Australia “continue to play the same way we’ve played over the last 12 to 18 months, I don’t think they’ll come close to us”.
In one sense Smith was right.
“We haven’t played well and England have played very well,” he said.
“They’ve been really disciplined with their bowling.
“Their batters know these conditions really well.
“We can learn a lot from the way they played here.”