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Rediff.com  » Sports » Smith defends World XI players

Smith defends World XI players

October 10, 2005 14:00 IST
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South Africa's Graeme Smith has dismissed media suggestions the Rest of the World team were not trying hard enough in their 3-0 series loss to Australia.

The World XI were thrashed in each of the one-day internationals against Australia in Melbourne in an ominous build up to this week's six-day super Test in Sydney.

"I look at it differently. You can't just build a team overnight," said Smith, who did not play in the one-dayers but will captain the Test side.

"There's always a lot of questions about players' commitment in these sorts of series and I think it is important that we can turn that around in this Test match."

Smith, the South African skipper, said he had no doubts his side could win the Test match but the key was getting his players to perform.

"If we can get things right, we have the players to go and do it," he said.

"I think when you have so many world class players it's important that everyone knows their roles.

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"Jacques Kallis plays differently from Brian Lara and Rahul Dravid plays differently from (Virender) Sehwag so it's important that we balance that and get the right structure.

"It would be stupid of me not to use the players around me. Communication is an important part of my captaincy so I will communicate with all the players.

"There are other players who are captains and it's important for me to use them. But at the end of the day, I'm leading the team and it's my job to round up all the information to make the best decision for the team."

Australia have not lost a Test series at home since 1992-93 and Smith said they were a different proposition on their home turf to the side that recently lost the Ashes in England.

"You're in Australia and you've got different balls and different conditions...so these are all different things you have to deal with when you come here. It's very difficult to win here."
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Source: REUTERS
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