CricketArchive

Hussey ton boosts Australians
by CricketArchive Staff Reporter


Ground:County Ground, New Road, Worcester
Scorecard:England Lions v Australians
Player:SJ Harmison, MEK Hussey, MG Johnson
Event:Australia in British Isles 2009

DateLine: 2nd July 2009

 

Left-hander Michael Hussey hit the first century of Australia's Ashes tour as the tourists finished Day One of their last warm-up game against England Lions on 337-8.

 

Hussey, who had last reached three figures in October 2008, finished on 143 not out, this being his 20th ton on English soil and his 50th in first-class cricket. Simon Katich also played well, warming up for the opening Test in a week with 95. Mitchell Johnson also showed his all-round value with 47.

 

However, the only other batsman to reach double figures was Nathan Hauritz (11 not out). In fact at one stage in the innings the Australians were struggling at 197-6 with four of their top six not getting beyond seven.

 

The situation could had been worse had Sajid Mahmood held on to one from Hussey on 75 off his own bowling. Though they missed a few chances, the Lions worked manfully on a pitch that did offer some early help in muggy conditions.

 

Steve Harmison made an impression, returning figures of 3-67 and hitting Phillip Hughes with his first delivery of the day. The opener than succumbed to another short one, as he could only fend a rising delivery to Joe Denly at gully.

 

Though not of the same pace, Graham Onions looked equally dangerous, taking 2-62 in his 20 overs of work. He was accurate and the accuracy accounted for skipper Ponting who looked out-of-sorts and edged a wide, short ball to Vikram Solanki at first slip.

 

The recovery then began courtesy Katich and Hussey who dug Australia out of early trouble from 24-2 with a third-wicket alliance of 141 in 29 overs. Just when left-hander Katich was five runs short of the three-figure mark, he hooked Harmison straight down Onions' throat at fine leg. This wicket sparked a middle-order collapse, Tim Bresnan tempting Michael Clarke to drive to Rashid, as three wickets went down for just 11 runs.

 

Marcus North (one) was unlucky to see a defensive prod deflect off his foot onto his stumps, while there seemed to be a further slice of good fortune for the Lions with Bresnan awarded a dubious lbw decision that sent Brad Haddin on his way for seven. Johnson then proved much bigger an obstacle than the majority of those batting above him. He mixed caution with aggression in a brilliant manner and added 129 alongside Hussey for the seventh wicket.

 

Eventually the Lions removed the big-hitting all-rounder when he gloved a short ball from the impressive Bresnan (3-46) through to wicketkeeper Steven Davies.

 

Harmison struck with the new ball, bowling Brett Lee for six, towards the end of a day that saw him give a timely reminder to the national selectors.


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