Waugh pleased with Smith’s leadership


Former Australia captain Steve Waugh was impressed with the way current Test skipper Steve Smith handled his reprimand during the second Test against New Zealand recently.

Smith and Josh Hazlewood were fined for dissent during the Test in Christchurch after vehemently questioning the umpires' decision not to give an LBW. Smith said afterwards that he should have handled it better.

Waugh was pleased to see the young captain take responsibility for his actions, and said accepting criticism was an important part of being a leader.

Waugh told Sky News: "I think it's a real positive sign he admits things haven't gone exactly as he'd like them to go and he's learning from his mistakes, which is a great sign as a leader.

"You're not always going to get it right first up. He plays with a lot of passion and enthusiasm and perhaps last week he may have crossed that line.

"And he recognises that, which is a really important step for him to take as a leader.

"I think he's done a really fantastic job, guys want to play with him, he leads by example and the last 12 months he really hasn't put a foot wrong."

Looking ahead, Waugh commented on the T20 side's chances of winning the World Twenty20 in India, saying that the hosts were by far the favourites but that the Aussies could stage an upset.

Waugh added: "Australia is definitely in with a chance (to win the tournament), a good chance, but India right now would be pretty comfortable with where they're sitting.

"The subcontinent teams on the turning slow pitches of India will probably hold a significant advantage. I think India are probably the firm favourites, but anything is possible.

"If you get some momentum going into the bigger games (and) one or two of your key players finding form then it is possible for any team to win that (World T20)."