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Ponting predicts bright cricket future for leggie Smith

London: Australian captain Ricky Ponting has predicted a bright future for upcoming leg spinning all-rounder Steve Smith after the latter put up a creditable performance in his debut Test against Pakistan.

Smith scored one and 12 and snared three wickets for 51 runs in the Test, which Pakistan lost by 150 runs on the fourth day.

"I think confidence wise for Steve to get those last two wickets, will do him the world of good. I think you saw today I thought he bowled a lot better today then he did in his first spell yesterday," the Sydney Morning Herald quoted Ponting, as saying.

"He will just continue to just grow with confidence and he will put more work on the ball as a result of that and he is just a great kid to have around the side," Ponting added.

Ponting predicted better times ahead for Smith with the blade.

"His enthusiasm is terrific and we did not see the best of him with the bat this game. He is a highly talented batter as well. When he went out to bat, he averaged 53 in first class cricket. So, when you have guy like that batting at eight, he is going to score some runs at some time," the Australian skipper said.

With incumbent spinner Nathan Hauritz sidelined with a foot injury, Smith has the chance to further push his case to be considered as Australia`s first choice spinner for the Ashes in Leeds next week.

ANI

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