Steve Smith century vs Australia: Here are four other Australian batsmen who scored two centuries in an Ashes Test
|Sun Aug 04 2019
Steve Smith century vs Australia: The Australian batsmen became the fifth Australian batsman to score consecutive hundreds in an Ashes Test.
During the fourth day of the first Test of the ongoing 2019 Ashes series between England and Australia at Edgbaston, Australia batsman Steven Smith became the fifth Australian batsman to score consecutive hundreds in an Ashes Test (eighth overall in Ashes).
Making his Test comeback after more than 16 months, Smith made it a point to remind one and all about his credentials in cricket’s ancestral format. Playing in tough batting conditions, Smith put on display outright grit and determination in both the innings to bail Australia out from situations where they could have easily lost the match.
Coming on the back of a sublime 144 (219) with the help of 16 fours and two sixes, Smith looks set to overpower the score in the second innings. While his century in the first innings saved the match for Australia (rescuing them from 122/8 to 284/10), his century in the second innings has it in it to win the match for the visitors.
Becoming only the second batsman to achieve the feat at Edgbaston, Smith’s performance in the Test came as a fitting reply to the English crowd who were booing him since the recently concluded ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.
Steve Smith century vs Australia
Coming in to bat at No. 4 in the 10th over last evening, Smith saved an end to finish the third day on a high. While Australia gained a 34-run lead at stumps yesterday, Smith registered a confident 46* (61). On the first delivery of the fourth over today, Smith ran a single off England fast bowler Stuart Broad to complete his half-century.
Australia co-vice-captain Travis Head batting freely came as an advantage for Smith who, for a change, seemed to not worry about the batsman at the other end. Treating deliveries according to their merit, it was in the 49th over when Smith hit England all-rounder Ben Stokes for a couple of boundaries on consecutive deliveries.
— Glenn Maxwell (@Gmaxi_32) August 4, 2019
While Head reached to his half-century in the 51st over, Smith hit consecutive boundaries off Joe Denly in the subsequent over. There was a time when it seemed as if Smith would complete his century before the lunch break but the 30-year old cricketer fell short by only a couple of runs.
On the third delivery which he faced post lunch, Smith hit a Broad delivery through the cover region to bring up his 25th Test century amidst standing ovation from the crowd. At the time of writing this article, Smith has crossed the 140-run mark for the second time in the match and has put his team in the driver’s seat.
Click on the next page (below) to know the names of other Australian batsmen who have scored consecutive centuries in an Ashes Test.
2) Matthew Hayden (2002)
Another special feature of Smith’s dual hundreds in an Ashes Test is the fact that he achieved the feat after as many as 17 years. The last time an Australian batsman did the same was way back in 2002 when Matthew Hayden took centrestage in Brisbane to ensure a 384-run Australian victory in the first Ashes Test.
Opening the batting with current coach Justin Langer, Hayden had dominated proceedings at the Gabba as the hosts scored 364/2 at Stumps – Day 1. Hayden might have added only 11 runs on Day 2 but his 10th Test century reminds of a match-winning 197 (268) with the help of 25 fours and two sixes.
Having gained a 167-run lead in the first innings, Australia’s position in the match was further strengthened when Hayden smashed another century on Day 4. A 153-run partnership for the third wicket alongside Damien Martyn (64) made the hosts as the favourites.
Continuing from where he left in the first innings, Hayden scored 103 (152) with the help of 13 fours and a six to pile on the agony on the English bowlers.
3) Steve Waugh (1997)
What Smith did at Edgbaston in 2019, current Australia mentor Steve Waugh had done it in 1997 at Old Trafford. After Australia captain Mark Taylor won the toss and chose to bat, Waugh scoring dual centuries played a vital role in Australia’s 268-run victory in the third Test to level the series 1-1.
Coming in to bat at 42/3 in the first inning, Waugh played a lone hand with what otherwise was a surrender in front of the English bowlers. Before becoming the second-last Australian batsman to get out, Waugh ended up scoring his 13th Test century, 108 (174), with the help of 13 fours.
An inspired spell from legendary spinner Shane Warne (30-14-48-6) saw Australia getting a 67-run lead in the first innings. A much better performance from the visitors’ lower order in the second half batted England out of the game.
Having said that, it was Waugh who stole the limelight yet again with his 14th Test century. Coming in to bat at 39/3 this time, Waugh ended up scoring 116 (271) with the help of 10 fours.
4) Arthur Morris (1947)
Exactly 50 years before Waugh’s heroics in Manchester, Australia opening batsman Arthur Morris had scored his first and second Test centuries in the first and second innings of the fourth Test respectively.
After England posted 460 in the first innings, Morris’ century played a crucial role in Australia gaining a 27-run lead in the first innings. With Sir Don Bradman getting out without scoring, Morris stitched a 189-run partnership alongside Lindsay Hassett (78) for the third wicket. Before getting out, Morris contributed with 122 (255) with the help of 12 fours and two sixes.
Chasing a 314-run target on the last day of the match, Morris saw to it that Australia draw the match without much trouble. The southpaw’s second Test century saw him scoring 124* (171) with the help of 12 fours.
5) Warren Bardsley (1909)
The first instance of an Australian batsman scoring two centuries in an Ashes Test was witnessed more than a century ago in 1909 when opening batsman Warren Bardsley did the aforementioned during the fifth Test at The Oval. Among the five batsmen who have done the same, three of them have done it in England which speaks highly of their quality.
After the then Australia captain Monty Noble won the toss and chose to bat, Bardsley’s 136 runs played a pivotal role in Australia scoring 325 in the first innings. With England gaining a 27-run lead in the first innings, it was important for Australia to post a handsome total to make sure that the hosts don’t build on their advantage.
Dominating the English bowlers alongside opening batsman Syd Gregory (74) and Noble (55), Bardsley scored 130 runs in the second innings in Australia’s 339/5 in the second innings. The match ended in a draw.