Before the ball tampering row, Steve Smith the then Australia cricket team captain was at the top of his game and was dominating Test cricket.
The ban imposed took toll on him and people forget how good the Smith was in red ball cricket and why he was at top of the rankings with the likes of Virat Kohli, Kane Williamson and Joe Root far behind him.
On Thursday, playing his first Test match in over a year and being first time back in Australia Test squad after serving ban Smith fought the lonely battle while all his teammates were having nightmare.
It is Ashes time and England pacers have made life like hell in the middle for the Australian batsman. However, there was one man who stood tall in the middle and is played like he never left Test cricket. Smith has scored yet another Test century after being back in Test cricket after a year.
England had reduced Australia to 122 for 8, but then Smith formed two crucial partnerships with first Peter Siddle and then Nathan Lyon to take his side to a comfortable first inning total.
It was inning of total control and hitting from the Smith. It may well be his best knock till date in Test cricket.
Earlier England dominated the morning and early afternoon with some excellent bowling from Stuart Broad and Chris Woakes, and some tentative Australian batting.
However Steve Smith, in his first Test Match in over a year, dug in and with some assistance from Peter Siddle and Nathan Lyon took Australia from 122/8 to a respectable 284 all out, before being bowled by Stuart Broad for a magnificent 144. Broad took 5/86 and Chris Woakes took 3/58 as both followed on from their good form versus Ireland at Lord’s last week.
Sadly for England though Jimmy Anderson managed only four overs before leaving the field with what sounds like a recurrence of his calf injury. With so little time to recover in between Tests England will have everything crossed that he makes a speedy recovery.