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  • Aus Vs Sa 3Rd Test Smith Khawaja Put Australia In Driving Seat

Khawaja nears his double ton, Smith goes past Bradman as Australia dominate Day 2

image-lciqi3qgSmith scored his 30th Test ton [Associated Press]

Steve Smith continued his red-hot form and notched up his 30th Test century and dominated the proceedings alongside a resurgent Usman Khawaja (195*) as bad light and rain put an end to a riveting day of Test cricket.

Rain has played a cat and mouse game with the fans at SCG and it continues to spoil any momentum the Aussie team have with them. At stumps on Day 2, Australia are 475 for 4, with Khawaja just 5 runs shy of his maiden Test double ton.

On a surface which is expected to get slower as the gamer progresses, Khawaja and Smith showed their class and took full advantage of a toothless Proteas bowling attack. The duo added 209 for the third wicket and tormented the visitors.

Interestingly, this was their 10th century partnerships in just 33 innings, clearly showing that the duo love batting with each other.

Known as the modern day 'Bradman', Smith went past Bradman in the career Test century list when he brought up his 30th ton. Eventually the right-handed batter was dismissed for 104, giving a simple catch to Keshav Maharaj.

This was a satisfying knock from Smith who in previous 20 innings against South Africa had averaged 41.67 - nearly 20 less than his career average.

On the other hand, Khawaja continues from where he left yesterday. He has a special liking for SCG and showed it once again when he slammed yet another ton at this famous venue. Moreover, the southpaw joined the elite list of Wally Hammond, Doug Walters, and VVS Laxman as the only batters to have scored three consecutive tons at this venue.

He reached his 13th Test century just before the lunch break and eventually upped the ante. 

The wicket of Smith brought in the in-form Travis Head who took the aggressive route right from the word go and tonked the South African bowlers all around the park. With the declaration on the cards, Head bludgeoned his way to a quick-fire 50 and was eventually dismissed for a well compiled 59-ball 70.

Khawaja continued the good work from the other end, but the rain god had something else planned for him. With just 5 runs to go for his maiden Test double ton, rain and bad light stopped the play and the umpires called it off for the day.

Brief Score

Australia 1st innings: 475-4 (131.0)

Usman Khawaja 195* (368), Steve Smith 104 (192);

Anrich Nortje 2-55 (22), Keshav Maharaj 1-108 (25)

Also Read: ICC Rankings: Indian players rewarded with rankings boost