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Smith hits second straight ton as Australia post 389-4 vs India

REUTERS
  Kathmandu, Nepal      November 29 2020

 

SYDNEY: Steve Smith led an imperious display from Australia’s top-order batsmen with his second straight century as the hosts piled on a massive 389 for four against India’s listless bowlers in the second one-day international in Sydney on Sunday.

The match followed a script similar to Friday’s opener at the Sydney Cricket Ground that Australia won by 66 runs, with captain Aaron Finch opting to bat after winning the toss.

Finch and his opening partner David Warner put on 142 for the first wicket in the second one-day match, after their 156-run stand on Friday, as India’s bowlers, who had conceded 374-6 in the last match, struggled in hot and blustery conditions.

Finch, who made 114 in the previous match, fell for 60 while Warner was run out for 83 by a direct hit from the deep while trying to steal a second run.

It was left to Smith to continue Australia’s quest for a big total and the right-hander delivered, mixing powerful hits with deft touches to pick up boundaries during his fluent knock.

Smith completed his 11th ton in the format in 62 balls and fell on 104 to all-rounder Hardik Pandya, who before Sunday had not bowled in international cricket since September last year due to a lower back injury.

Glenn Maxwell’s belligerent unbeaten 63 from 29 balls, which included four sixes and an equal number of fours, and a stroke-filled 70 from Marnus Labuschagne helped Australia build on the strong platform and finish with a flourish.