Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cricket: Century Won't Change Smith; Durham Batsman Aware He Has to Find Consistency

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Cricket: Century Won't Change Smith; Durham Batsman Aware He Has to Find Consistency

Article excerpt

Byline: LUKE EDWARDS

WILL Smith may have scored his first century for Durham in the tremendous win over reigning champions Sussex last weekend but he knows he still has plenty to prove at the Riverside, writes LUKE EDWARDS.

Smith has had to wait for another chance to impress, having lost his place in both the Championship and one-day sides last season, and he admits he was forced to contemplate the possibility that he might have to pursue another career path. But the 25-year-old has shown plenty of determination, as well as patience, behind the scenes at Chester-le- Street and has made a highly impressive return to the first team with a half century against Derbyshire in the Friends Provident Trophy followed by a century at Hove last weekend.

Smith, who made the difficult decision to leave today's quarterfinal opponents Nottinghamshire in search of regular first team cricket two years ago, is now focused on making sure he cements his place in Durham's competitive batting line-up.

"I was really pleased with the century as you would expect, but I'm not going to dine out on it," said Smith, who is out of contract at the end of the season and desperate for a new deal.

"I'm 25 now, I don't fall into the promising youngster category any more and it's up to me to prove that these sorts of scores can happen regularly rather than just the odd one-off. We've got players like Michael Di Venuto and Dale Benkenstein who are guaranteed their place in the side because they consistently go out there and make big scores. That's my aim. I want to be like those two guys and an example for the younger players. "I'm too old to be talked about as a youngster, even if I'm still relatively young, I've got to show I can perform consistently at this level. I love playing for Durham and I'm determined to make sure I continue to do that beyond the end of this season. …

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