Smith thanks Warne for ODI debut

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Sydney, Feb.19 (ANI): Leg-spinning Australian all-rounder Steven Smith has said that his national ODI debut is all due to the advice he received from former leg-spinning great Shane Warne.

Smith will make a keenly anticipated one-day international debut against the West Indies at the MCG today while Australia's main spinner, Nathan Hauritz, rests, and soon afterwards will depart with the Twenty20 team to New Zealand, his maiden international tour.

If his head is spinning, the 20-year-old hides it well.

Smith possesses a quiet self-assurance, and emerged from a 30-minute tutorial with Warne during the Boxing Day Test, when he was called up as a Test understudy to Hauritz, with renewed belief in his leg spin bowling.

"When I was down here working with him I wasn't bowling too well at the start of the session. By the end of it, the ball was coming out really good, I had good shape on the ball and I was getting a little bit of turn as well," the Sydney Morning Herald quoted Smith, as saying on the eve of his ODI debut..

He added: "I can't thank Shane enough. Since then the ball has been coming out really well and it's all coming together. I've gained a few different things from that. I've slowed my run-up down a little bit and I've got my shoulder a bit higher. It's quite hard to explain. It's a few little minor changes but it's worked pretty well so far ...

"I've always dreamt of playing for Australia. To have made my Twenty20 debut and hopefully make my one-day debut tomorrow is pretty exciting and I've only got one more step to go, I guess, to make the ultimate goal of playing Test cricket."

Smith and Hauritz were named in the squad for two Twenty20 internationals in New Zealand, but at this stage the elder spinner is the preferred option for the ICC tournament in the Caribbean. (ANI)

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