Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Smith scored his second Test century
Australia batsman Steven Smith’s unbeaten century kept England at bay after they gained an early advantage over the baggy greens on the first day of the third Test in Perth.
Smith was well supported by opening batsman David Warner and wicketkeeper Brad Haddin, both of whom scored half-centuries.
Australia captain Michael Clarke, who was playing in his 100th Test match, won the toss and elected to bat first.
His decision backfired almost immediately as opening batsman Chris Rogers was run out by James Anderson for only 11 runs.
All-rounder Shane Watson could only score 18 runs before edging a delivery from Stuart Broad to Graeme Swann in the slip region.
With Rogers and Watson having fallen in quick succession, Warner and Clarke stabilised the innings with a 54-run partnership before Clarke was caught by England captain Alastair Cook, who was also playing in his 100th Test match, at short midwicket off the bowling of Graeme Swann for 24.
Warner managed to bring up his half-century before being caught by Michael Carberry at backward point to become Swann’s victim of the day.
Warner’s fantastic knock of 60 came off 77 balls and included eight boundaries and a six.
George bailey only managed to amass seven runs before hitting a delivery from Broad to Kevin Pietersen at deep backward square.
With Australia struggling at 143/5, Smith and Haddin came to the rescue with a magnificent 124-run partnership, during which both batsmen brought up their half-centuries, before Haddin was caught by Anderson at midwicket off the bowling of Ben Stokes for 55.
Haddin’s outstanding innings of 55 came off 100 deliveries and included five boundaries and two sixes.
Smith and Mitchell Johnson continued to pile on the runs as they amassed an unbeaten 59-run partnership, during which Smith registered his second Test century, before stumps was called.
Smith finished on 103 off 191 balls, which included 13 boundaries and two maximums, while Johnson remained undefeated on 39 off 60 deliveries, which included six boundaries.
Broad and Swann were the pick of the England bowlers with two wickets apiece, while Stokes chipped in with one.
Australia ended the day on 326/6 and will continue batting tomorrow at 10:30 local time or 02:30 GMT.