Sydney, Jan 5 (Ajit Weekly News) Continuing with his tremendous form, Australia opener Usman Khawaja on Thursday stormed to his 12th Test century on the second day of the third and final Test against South Africa, joining an elite list of batters who have scored three consecutive centuries at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
Khawaja is the fourth Australian and seventh overall to achieve the feat of scoring four or more consecutive centuries at SCG joining a group that includes India’s, VVS Laxman.
Khawaja, who was batting on 54 when rain stopped play on Day 1 with the hosts at 147/2 in 47 overs, continued his rich vein of form in the last 12 months which has seen him reach the three-figure mark on five occasions as he scored his century when he pulled Kagiso Rabada for two runs in the morning session on Thursday. Khawaja took 206 balls to reach the three-figure mark and struck eight fours and one six in the process.
Khawaja thus became the fourth player to score three consecutive hundreds at the SCG, following hundreds in both innings of the Ashes Test against England at the SCG around the same time last year. The three players who have done this earlier are Australian duo Wally Hammond and Doug Walters and India’s Laxman.
Khawaja is the only Australian to average more than 100 in Sydney Tests (minimum five innings), something only England’s Wally Hammond (161.60) and India’s Sachin Tendulkar (157) have achieved in the ground’s storied history, informed a report in the cricket.com.au website.
He also becomes the seventh player to have scored four or more Test hundreds in Sydney, a list that includes his opening partner David Warner.
“There’s a lot of special feelings here,” Khawaja told Fox Cricket at the lunch break. “I grew up just up the road. My family is here watching and my new family – with (wife) Rachel, and our two kids – are here.
“It’s just a nice feeling, I’ve got friends in the crowd. It’s where I grew up so it’s always an honour to score runs here,” Khawaja was quoted as saying by Australian media outlets.
At drinks in the second session on Day 2, Khawaja was batting on 142 with Steve Smith on 92 as Australia have reached 334/2 in 103 overs.
–Ajit Weekly News
News Credits – I A N S