A local batting coach has spectacularly questioned Steve Smith’s ability to knuckle down and build an innings, suggesting that the star batsman needs to concentrate harder while at the crease. Self-proclaimed “willow scientist” Brad Reynolds has spoken out about Smith’s supposed weakness of getting out in the 140s after back-to-back failures in the current Test Match against England.

Speaking exclusively to The Watsonia Bugle about his theory, Reynolds said, “He’s got out in the 140s two innings in a row now. That suggests an obvious flaw in his application. If you want to be truly great, you need to push past the 140s and post really really big hundreds. At the moment, I’m just not sure that Steve is at that level yet.”

However, local middle order batsman Paul Youngman said Smith’s current predicament was a good problem to have. Youngman said, “Getting out in the 140s is a problem now? Surely not. I might talk a big game around the boys but, to be honest, I’d be happy to have a problem of getting out in the 40s, let alone the 140s. My batting average over the last few seasons is 23.76. And I’ve invested way too much time and energy into just achieving that. Sometimes I wonder if I’m wasting my time.”