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Last Updated: Thursday, 8 November 2007, 07:42 GMT
Aussies thrive on Jaques century
First Test, Brisbane, day one (stumps): Australia 242-3 v Sri Lanka

Phil Jaques
Jaques produced an excellent innings on day one at the Gabba

Phil Jaques profited from two dropped catches to hit his maiden Test century as Australia dominated day one of the first Test against Sri Lanka.

Jaques made 100 in Brisbane with Matthew Hayden (43) and Ricky Ponting (56) also producing good contributions as Australia reached 242-3.

Muttiah Muralitharan bowled menacingly, taking 2-67 to stand six wickets shy of Shane Warne's Test record of 708.

He had Jaques and Ponting stumped and was unlucky not to take more wickets.

Muralitharan saw Jaques dropped twice off his bowling in the slips - Sri Lanka spilled four catches during the course of the day - and caused Michael Hussey plenty of problems late in the day.

After winning the toss, the tourists surprisingly put Australia in to bat in a decision echoing England captain Nasser Hussain's infamous error of 2000.

The tourists left out their fastest weapon Lasith Malinga - with Chaminda Vaas and Farveez Maharoof taking the new ball.

Kumar Sangakkara was unable to play because of injury, leaving a hole in the Sri Lanka batting.

606: DEBATE
greyblazer

Play started 15 minutes late following overnight rain at the Gabba and, after Jaques survived a maiden first up from Vaas, rain meant the second over was not bowled for nearly an hour.

Jaques took 34 balls to get off the mark but took advantage of the numerous loose balls that came after lunch, feasting on some wayward short-pitched bowling from Dilhara Fernando.

Typically, Hayden was more confident, walking towards the bowlers and finding boundaries with powerful cuts and drives.

He departed for 43, however, with the scoreboard on 69 in the 23rd over, when he tried to drive Vaas over the bowler's head, only to sky the ball wide of Muralitharan at mid-off.

The fielder sprinted to his right to take an excellent catch.

Jaques then put on 114 with Ponting, who quickly found his touch by feasting on the inconsistent Fernando.

The ball zipped around for the first hour and a bit, but then it got a little bit wet and stopped swinging

Phil Jaques

But soon after tea, the Australia skipper was drawn forward by a Muralitharan "doosra" delivered from around the wicket, keeper Prasanna Jayawardene whipping the bails off with great speed.

Jaques first got lucky on 60 - Jayawardene the offender - and Thilan Samaraweera repeated the mistake when the batsman had reached 90.

But in between times, the New South Welshman played some fine shots.

Having generally traded in pulls and drives, he threaded a cut shot between two cover fielders to reach his century off Vaas.

Moments later, he charged Murali only to misread a heavily-spun off-break, and was easily stumped.

Australian journalists attempt to find a way of covering the match
Many Australian journalists were denied access to the Gabba

Jaques said: "The ball zipped around for the first hour and a bit, but then it got a little bit wet and stopped swinging.

"I'm very disappointed that I got out. I really wanted to be there for the second new ball but I'm also very happy to make a hundred.

"I really want to make the opening batting spot my own and I've gone a little way towards that - I really want to get the guys off to a good start each time.

"Murali bowled pretty well. He dangled the carrot at me with a bit of a slow one [for the dismissal].

Hussey and Michael Clarke took Australia to stumps, though Hussey was dropped at midwicket on 13 by Marvan Atapattu off Maharoof.

He narrowly avoided giving Muralitharan a wicket as a bat-pad catch just failed to carry, but recovered to slog-sweep the same bowler for the day's only six.

At stumps, he was gaining confidence to be 28 not out, with Clarke on five.

  • The world's three leading news agencies did not cover day one of the Test due to a dispute with Cricket Australia.

    Reuters, Agence France-Presse and Associated Press have suspended all coverage of the 2007-08 season.

    Their photographers and reporters were unable to supply material from within the ground. As a result, our picture of Phil Jaques is not from the current match.

    SEE ALSO
    Tait frustrated by injury setback
    05 Nov 07 |  Australia
    Warne-Murali trophy is unveiled
    03 Nov 07 |  International Teams
    Sri Lanka in Australia 2007
    21 Apr 07 |  Cricket


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