Smith breaks Australia’s Test century drought against India

Sydney, Jan 8 (IANS) Prolific batsman Steve Smith on Friday ended Australia’s near four-year drought of centuries against India after scoring 131 in the first innings of the ongoing third Test of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

The right-handed batsman was, in fact, the last Australian to score a hundred for his country against India back in 2017 when he made 111 in the first innings of the Dharamsala Test.

Since then the Aussies went 11 completed innings, all in Australia, without a century before Smith himself broke the jinx.

Smith though himself wasn’t part of the line-up in seven of those innings during the 2018-19 series as he was serving a ban for his involvement in the ball-tampering row.

Prior to Australia’s first innings in the ongoing Test at the SCG, the individual highest score by an Australian batsman was 79 by Marcus Harris during the last series in 2018-19. Harris is sitting on the bench in this series.

Marnus Labuschagne got past 79 first, making 91 on Friday before getting dismissed by left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja. Labuschagne’s individual score was then surpassed by Smith as the Aussies made 338, their highest total in the last eight Tests against India.

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