Off spin? Easy to bowl and easy to bat against.
Steve Smith has become just the fifth Australian to score a hundred in both innings of an Ashes Test match, following up his first innings 144 with a score of 142 on Day 4 that was every bit as impressive.
The Aussie hero brought up his second hundred at Edgbaston just as he did his first, with a beautifully timed cover drive for four, this time from the bowling of Stuart Broad in the 63rd over.
With the stroke, Smith became a member of a prestigious group of five Australians to have completed the feat, along with Matthew Hayden, Steve Waugh, Arthur Morris and Warren Bardsley.
Smith’s first Test double is the first in nearly 17 years, since Hayden scored 197 and 103 at the Gabba in the opening Test of the 2002/03 Ashes.
Hayden’s effort was the first of the 20th Century, following Waugh (1997), Morris (1947) and Bardsley (1909).
Smith’s pair of tons are the eighth in the history of the Ashes, with Englishmen Denis Compton (1947), Wally Hammond (1929) and Herbert Sutcliffe (1925) rounding out the club.
It’s just the 85th time in the history of cricket that a player has scored two hundreds in a Test, and the first in 2019.
Meanwhile, Smith’s second innings takes his tally of Ashes tons to ten, tying Steve Waugh for third behind England’s Jack Hobbs (12) and Sir Donald Bradman (19).
When a deft glance pierced the gap between keeper and leg slip to find the boundary from a Joe Root delivery in the 85th over, Australia’s first Test goliath became the first batsman in Ashes history to score 140 in both innings.
The pair of 140-plus scores are just the fourth in Test cricket, with Smith etching his name in history alongside Sri Lanka’s Tillakaratne Dilshan (162 and 143 vs Bangladesh in 2009), Zimbabwe’s Andy Flower (142 and 199* vs South Africa in 2001) and Allan Border (150 not out and 153 vs Pakistan in 1980).
With Australia’s epic victory at Edgbaston, Smith joins Dilshan as the only ones to have recorded a victory along with their historic performance.
Border’s Test was drawn, while Flower’s Zimbabweans inconceivably lost to South Africa after he scored nearly half of his team’s runs in the match.