Friday 13 December 2013 

Smith Century Makes It Australia's Day

Steve Smith, Ben Stokes
Steve Smith jumps as he celebrates his century on day of the third Ashes Test in Perth
© REUTERS / Action Images
 

Australia 326-7 (Smith 103no, Warner 60) v
England
Third Ashes Test, Perth, day one
Scorecard

England threatened to take the honours on day one of the third Ashes Test in Perth before Steve Smith's unbeaten century ensured the home side prevailed once again.

Smith followed up the maiden Test century he scored at The Oval against the same opponents with 103 not out in 191 balls as Australia closed on 326 for six.

England had done well to reduce them to 129 for four and 143 for five before Smith put on partnerships of 124 with Brad Haddin (55) and 59 with Mitchell Johnson (39 not out).

David Warner had earlier made 60 before a brace of wickets apiece for Stuart Broad and Graeme Swann gave raised England's hopes of taking control.

It wasn't to be and on a scorching day in Western Australia, towards the close of play Johnson firmly pressed home Australia's position with some strong hitting.

Smith had also been strong, hitting 13 fours and two sixes - the first of which got him off the mark - during his innings with Warner also aggressive, striking eight fours and a six.

With Australia unchanged, England made one change to their side by bringing in Tim Bresnan to replace Monty Panesar, reverting to four seamers and one spinner.

Bresnan bowled tidily but it was Broad and Ben Stokes (1-51) who were the quick bowlers in the wickets while James Anderson was quickly into the action with a superb direct hit to run out Chris Rogers for 11 at the end of the second over following Australia's decision to bat first.

Shane Watson (18) then drove loosely at Broad and was caught by Swann in the slips and Michael Clarke, like opposite number Alatair Cook celebrating his 100th Test, was next to go.

He had made 24 before he clipped Swann into the leg-side only to be caught by a diving Cook inches from the ground to leave the home side on 106 for three.

And when Warner drove at Swann to offer Michael Carberry a simple catch and George Bailey (7) pulled Broad into the hands of Kevin Pietersen, England could be pleased with their work.

But they would end the day less pleased than Smith and Haddin could be. They repelled everything England had, from length balls to plenty of short deliveries that were well dealt with and Haddin reached his fourth consecutive Test half-cenury and passed 300 runs in the series.

He did, however, fall to a short ball when he failed to keep a Ben Stokes bouncer down and was well caught by Anderson.

Smith then reached his century which was one he had to work hard for, coming in with Australia in some trouble and he deserved the ovation he received for his efforts.

He was greeted by a bear hug from Johnson who then proceeded to crack six fours, two in one over as Broad tried to give him a taste of his own medicine with a couple of bouncers.

It didn't work, and England, already 2-0 down in the series, go into day two knowing they may need to reassess some of their plans for both the match, and the series moving forward.

© Cricket World 2013

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Fixtures & Results

21st-25th November: 1st Test, Gabba, Brisbane
AUS 295 & 401-7d. beat ENG 136 & 179 by 381 runs
5th-9th December: 2nd Test, Adelaide Oval, Adelaide
AUS 570-9d & 132-3d beat ENG 172 & 312 by 218 runs
13th-17th December: 3rd Test, WACA, Perth
AUS 385 & 369-8 d. beat ENG 251 & 353 by 150 runs
26th-30th December: 4th Test, MCG, Melbourne
AUS 204 & 231-2 beat ENG 255 & 179 by 8 wickets
3rd-7th January: 5th Test, SCG, Sydney
AUS 326 & 274 beat ENG 155 & 166 by 281 runs