Inside the Mind of Steve Smith


Inside the Mind of Steve Smith

Illustration: Sushant Ahire

Dang, what a week, mates!

Last week was ripper. This week I got booed at the stadium in Cape Town. I got booed at the airport. I got booed inside the chockers flight. I got booed by the Sheilas who call themselves my fans as I landed in Australia. To take my mind off all the media attention, I went out to my farm and even the cows started booing me. But then my girlfriend pointed out that they were actually mooing and that’s what cows do.

All this brouhaha seems to have taken a toll on me. And for what? Using a sticky yellow tape. Oops… I forgot that lie is caught.

Now that I’ve been banned for a year, I have no choice but to update my LinkedIn profile and hunt for a job. But I have a problem. I can only play bat-ball, I have no other skills. Imagine the best batsman in the world working as a cashier at Walmart or Servo? I don’t mean to whinge, but for fuck’s sake! It’s a bit of a downer that cheats aren’t appreciated in any profession in this time and age. Maybe I should try to be a politician.

I’ve had a lot of time to think of the actions that unfolded that day on the field. If you were to ask me whether I would do things any differently, my answer would be a resounding yes. We should have definitely been a bit more subtle about the tampering, using a bottle opener, lip balm, or a pant zipper. Who the fuck fidgets with the ball when there are 40 cameras tracking you all the time? That was definitely stupid. Warner and I had poor grades at school, but I thought Bancroft was one of the smart kids who’d point out the obvious glitch in the plan.

If there’s a lesson I’ve learnt from this, it is that you can never trust these fucking interns. You had one job, Bancroft! Not only was he stupid enough to get caught, he wasn’t even able to influence the condition of the ball significantly. What will the world think? That not only were we bad at cricket, we were also pretty shit at cheating!

I’ve had quite a few lows in life, I tell ya mate, but none bigger than being judged by the Rajasthan Royals.

And after all the shit went down, the ICC, Cricket Australia, the Prime Minister, former players, captains, commentators, everyone started hating on us. Even coach Lehman distanced himself from the incident, saying he had no knowledge. He was caught on camera transmitting messages into a walkie-talkie! What was he doing? Ordering an Uber? Recording a song on SoundCloud? Whispering sweet nothings to a coalition of baby ’roos and koalas?

Apparently, I’m some sort of a role model for children and have also let the country down. These dipsticks are cheating at exams, cheating on their girlfriends, adults are evading taxes, paying bribes, but sure, I’m the worst person to ever walk the planet. Everyone is allowed to be wrong once in a while but I do it and everyone’s coming for my head!

I’ve had quite a few lows in life, I tell ya mate, but none bigger than being judged by the Rajasthan Royals. For a team that was suspended for two years for match-fixing, it’s a bit rich for them to sit on their high horse and pass judgment on me.

People are coming up to me and saying “Steve, you were the best batsman in the world. Why would you do this and tarnish your reputation?” It’s a question that makes me cry every time I hear it. What can I say? I hate using this word, but this was a real “brain fade”.