Sport Smith admits ODI series took its toll

01:33  13 february  2018
01:33  13 february  2018 Source:   Wide World of Sports

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Refreshed by a badly-needed fortnight off and honoured for his outstanding year, Steve Smith is back to work.

The Australian cricket captain will return to training later on Tuesday and start preparing for the South African tour, the day after winning his second Allan Border Medal.

Smith knew he needed a break and he hopes David Warner's couple of days off this week will also refresh the opener.

"I actually want to pick up a bat now," said Smith, who will leave for South Africa later this week.

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ODI . AUS. Skipper Steve Smith admitted the toll of the series got to him after the game, saying he cried in the team dressing rooms after the game. Smith and Mitch Marsh's 301-run stand turned the Test on its head.

"I'm going to go have a hit ... and I'm actually excited about it, about getting back into it and excited about South Africa.

"Davey will be in a similar boat."

After leading from the front in Australia's 4-0 Ashes triumph, Smith struggled during the 4-1 one-day series loss to England and knew he needed some time off.

Steve Smith poses after he wins the Alan Border Medal. © Getty Images Steve Smith poses after he wins the Alan Border Medal. A big year on and off the field, punctuated by the Ashes, the Indian tour and Australian cricket's pay dispute, had taken its toll.

"Where my mind was at (during the one-dayers), compared to where it was a couple of weeks earlier, was in a completely different place - and a place I quite didn't enjoy, to be perfectly honest," Smith said.

He added that a better mindset had been the key reason for his outstanding form through last year.

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South Africa has been literally decimated by India in the ongoing ODI series . South Africa is already missing its key players who’ve been away due to injuries. Graeme Smith feels that the next generation of South African cricket does not seem ready at all.

Smith speaks frequently about resilience and feels his team has also improved markedly in that area.

The tough South African tour will show how far they have come.

"We know one series isn't the defining moment of a great team," Smith said of their Ashes domination.

"You need to continually do it.

"This next challenge in South Africa is going to be a huge one."

Pictures: 2018 Allan Border Medal

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