Usman Khawaja torments England once more as Australia chase 4-Zero collection lead

Australias Usman Khawaja celebrates reaching his century (100 runs) on day four of the fourth Ashes cricket test between Australia and England at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on January 8, 2022. — AFP
Australia’s Usman Khawaja celebrates reaching his century (100 runs) on day 4 of the fourth Ashes cricket check between Australia and England on the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on January 8, 2022. — AFP

SYDNEY: Usman Khawaja finessed his second century of the match to position Australia in a commanding place to chase down one more victory over weary England within the fourth Ashes Test in Sydney on Saturday.

The Pakistan-born Khawaja has been in imperious type in his comeback from a 30-month Test exile, hitting 137 within the first innings earlier than including an unbeaten 101 to interrupt English hearts.

His domineering 179-run partnership with teenager Cameron Green arrange a late declaration and left a beleaguered England having to defy historical past with a formidable goal of 388.

The vacationers received to the shut with out shedding a wicket for 30, with Zak Crawley on 22 not out and Haseeb Hameed on eight. They path by 357.

The highest successful run chase within the fourth innings on the Sydney Cricket Ground stands at 288-2 by Australia towards South Africa in 2006. No touring crew has gone previous 200.

England, who surrendered the Ashes inside 12 days and have but to move 300 within the collection, will hope to cease Australia going 4-Zero up on Sunday’s ultimate day.

Khawaja turned the third Australian participant to attain twin centuries in 140 years of Ashes cricket on the SCG, and the sixth in a Test match.

“I always wanted to score a century in both innings in first-class cricket and have never done it, but it’s just a nice one to tick off,” Khawaja mentioned.

“It puts the team in a position where hopefully we can try win a Test match tomorrow. It all worked out pretty well, it doesn’t always happen in life, in cricket, it’s special.”

He toyed with the England bowling along with his hundred flowing off 138 balls, laced with 10 fours and two sixes.

He had stable assist from Green, who registered his second Test half-century with a confidence-boosting 74 earlier than he top-edged Jack Leach to Joe Root.

Alex Carey surprisingly got here out to bat and was out first ball to Leach, signalling the long-awaited declaration by skipper Pat Cummins.

Leach completed with 4-84 off 21.5 overs.

Khawaja and Green rebuffed England’s efforts after the lack of key batsmen David Warner, Marnus Labuschagne and Steve Smith to have the Australians at 86 for 4.

Smith once more did not get entering into a 31-ball keep and was bowled for 23 after he was late on the shot from a Leach skidder.

So far within the collection, Smith has scored a complete of 217 runs after scoring 93 within the second Adelaide Test. His collection common stands at 36.16, nicely under his present Test common of 60.84.

Mark Wood as soon as once more captured the valued wicket of the number-one-rated Test batsman Labuschagne, having him caught behind for 29.

The Durham categorical bowler has now taken Labuschagne’s wicket 3 times amongst his eight wickets within the collection, within the house of 52 balls.

Australia misplaced openers Warner (3) and Marcus Harris (27) earlier than lunch.

The indefatigable Wood coaxed an outdoor edge off Warner for stand-in wicketkeeper Ollie Pope to take the catch.

Pope completed with 4 catches deputising for Jos Buttler, who had X-rays after taking a blow to his left index finger on day two.

Buttler’s harm will probably be evaluated on the finish of the Sydney Test, crew officers mentioned.

The stand-in gloved a catch to dismiss Harris off spinner Leach.

England earlier added 36 runs earlier than they had been dismissed for 294 to provide Australia a 122-run innings lead.

Jonny Bairstow added 10 extra runs earlier than he was caught behind off Scott Boland.

The massive Yorkshireman soaked up the gang’s applause as he left the sphere, after his first Ashes century in Australia.

Bairstow confronted 158 balls and hit eight fours and three sixes, battling on after taking a nasty blow to his thumb from Cummins when he was on 60.

Boland continued his exceptional collection along with his crew’s finest figures of 4-36.

Since his extraordinary Test debut in Melbourne, the place he was man of the match with 6-7, he has captured 11 wickets at 8.27.

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