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Aussie skipper looks 'lost': Graeme Smith

AAP logoAAP 9/11/2016 Adrian Warren

Former South African cricket captain Graeme Smith says Australian skipper Steve Smith looks lost.

Smith said he empathised with what his namesake was going through and suggested there had been a polarised atmosphere in the Australian dressing room in recent years.

After a strong start under his leadership, Australia were swept 3-0 in Sri Lanka and were beaten at home by South Africa in their series opener in Perth this week.

"I look at him and you kind of think he's trying to figure a lot of stuff out at the moment," said Smith, who on Wednesday evening was inducted as a Bradman Honouree at the SCG.

"I certainly went through those phases in my career and you need to figure them out quickly.

"He's probably asking himself a lot of questions about style of play , what type of leader he is, what is the type of players that he wants to walk on to the field with.

"What is his style? Like does he want three seamers that are fast? Does he need a guy to keep it tight? Does he want a spinner? What type of line-up and then the personality of that team.

"But as a leader, I think you need to understand that for yourself about who you are and that's the only time you can really get your team to play with that personality.

"I think he's trying to figure that all out at the moment. It certainly looks that way and he looks a bit lost."

He said Australian cricket found itself in an interesting place after books from recent players, including former captain Michael Clarke, which suggested there wasn't always total harmony.

"If I I think about earlier years it was always built on respect and the value of the baggy green," Smith said.

"Maybe players didn't always get on but they respected the environment and they were traditional and they understood the importance of what playing for Australia meant.

"You kind of always got the feeling that there was a polarised sense in the Aussie team over the last few years and maybe Steve Smith has inherited that a little bit and trying to build again.

"I think that has obviously come through in all the books, it comes through in the relationships that the guys had."

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