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Last Updated: Wednesday, 27 December 2006, 08:18 GMT
Symonds century delights Aussies
Andrew Symonds hits a boundary
Symmo is a true warrior

Matthew Hayden on Symonds
Matthew Hayden praised a "remarkable" innings by team-mate Andrew Symonds as Australia built a big lead on day two of the Melbourne Test against England.

The pair shared a stand of 279 with Hayden making 153 and Symonds surviving to reach 154 not out at stumps.

The pair also play together for state side Queensland and Hayden said: "I was just so proud of him.

"A first Test match hundred is just so special. When he decided to go after it, he was just unstoppable."

He continued: "From fishing and hunting to camping together to Test match hundreds in Melbourne's 100th Test match. It was an incredible day."


Symonds was recalled to the Australian team for the third Test in Perth in the continuing absence of Shane Watson, who had been earmarked for the number six spot in their batting line-up prior to the series but has been unable to play because of injury.

He managed scores of only 26 and two at the Waca, giving him a Test average of 18.47 going into the game in Melbourne.

"I was very nervous when I first got out there...after a dozen balls I was thinking 'Where am I going to get a run here?'," admitted Symonds, who took 21 balls to get off the mark.

His innings gathered momentum as the afternoon progressed and he brought up his hundred in the grand manner with a six off Paul Collingwood.

Matthew Hayden
Hayden again underlined his value to the Australian team

"I was thinking whether I should do this in ones or give it some 'Larry Dooley'* and I decided if he slipped one up I would give it some 'Larry Dooley', but I didn't know it went for six," the 31-year-old explained. (*SEE FOOT OF PAGE)

He and Hayden raised more than AUS $4,400 (1,760) for breast cancer research during their partnership. The pair had pink grips on their bat handles and donations were pledged of $20 for every run scored by hayden and $100 for every boundary from Symonds.

Hayden, meanwhile, dismissed suggestions that he would be following Damien Martyn, Shane Warne and Glenn McGrath into retirement any time soon.

There is increasing competition for places at the top of the order with the likes of Phil Jaques and Chris Rogers waiting for an opportunity.

"Runs are the only value in terms of currency, so I have to be on my game all the time," said Hayden, whose century was his 27th in Tests.

"You are always getting pressed from behind, it's an important part of Australian cricket.

"But I love my cricket, I love playing with these blokes and to me I'm just not ready to let it go just yet."

NOTE: Larry Dooley - A former Australian boxer. If someone is handing out a bit of stick in a sporting context, it is known as giving it a bit of a 'Larry' or 'Larry Dooley'.

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