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Australia v India

Watch: Labuschagne copies Smith’s ‘registered trademark’ leaves

Labuschangne Smith
by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

That Marnus Labuschagne is the unofficial protege to Steve Smith is a well-established fact, but the Australia run-machine seems to be doing all he can to mimic his mentor in more ways than one.

Smith’s quirky style of leaving deliveries outside off has acquired cult status in recent times, but Labuschagne, in Australia’s first Test of this summer, proved that he is not far behind either.

On day two of the Australia-India Adelaide Test, Labuschagne walked to the middle with the score reading 16-1 and Smith at the other end. Greeted first up with a harmless Jasprit Bumrah delivery outside the off stump, Labuschagne presented an extravagant leave, shifting across, shouldering his arms, and shouting: “No run!” It was a classic Smith leave.

It wasn’t a one-off; Labuschagne continued to put his eccentric style on display, almost eerily matching Smith in the way he excitedly moved his bat about. He managed to do that even while defending deliveries, prodding the ball back on the pitch, and waving his bat to say “No run” to the non-striker.

He carried on in similar fashion throughout his 119-ball 47, the top score among Australia’s top six. Allan Border, on commentary for Fox Cricket, called it odd behaviour”. As expected, Twitter was just as amused.


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