'Comeback kid' Smith seeks help from sports shrink to play without 'pre-mediated thoughts'
Sydney, Mar 15 : Australian cricketer Steve Smith has sought the help of Cricket Australia's (CA) sports psychologist to ensure that he plays without any pre-mediated thoughts in his first Test comeback in more than two years.
The NSW all-rounder was named for the starting XI for the third Test against India at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium in Mohali, which was washed out on the first day after persistent rains, News.com.au reports.
Smith, who has a mediocre batting average of 28.78 from five Tests, revealed that he has turned to sports psychologist Michael Lloyd, who was flown in by CA to provide professional help to Oz players following their heavy defeat in the second Test in Hyderabad, to ensure he enters the third Test with positive thoughts.
Smith, who will bat at No.5 in place of captain Michael Clarke, who has promoted himself to first drop for this Test, said that he will try hard not to let pre-mediated thoughts cloud his mind while playing and play each ball on its merits.
Determined not to fail in Mohali, Smith said that he already has interacted with Lloyd and stated that he needed to be focused mentally and make sure that he has a clear mind ahead of the third Test so that he can be in his best form.
Smith was considered almost no hope to play a Test on this tour, but the suspension of the Foolish Four- Shane Watson, James Pattinson, Mitchell Johnson and Usman Khawaja- on Monday has given the 23-year-old his Steven Bradbury moment in the baggy green, the report added.