Khawaja and Smith score centuries as Australia dominates Proteas on day two

Usman Khawaja and Steve Smith scored centuries as Australia established a great lead before rain intervened again on the second day of the third Test against South Africa at SCG on Thursday.

Khawaja was undefeated in 195* alongside Matt Renshaw (5*).

The hosts were completely dominant to subdue Proteas, with only two wickets remaining, which dropped to 84 during the day. However, the question of time remaining in the Test is of great importance after more delays on the second day with the bad weather forecast for Sydney in the coming days.

Khawaja continued with Australia 148-2 with Smith after just 47 overs on the first day due to a combination of bad light and rain.

After an early rain delay, the 36-year-old left-handed opening batsman took the lead from the front and brought the 13th Test century into the spotlight with two from Kagiso Rabada late in the opening session.

Khawaja celebrated his third consecutive SCG face with an air punch and a little joke. Smith brought his half century into the spotlight shortly after.

South African captain Dean Elgar obviously threw the old ball away when Proteas picked up the new ball shortly before lunch, but this resulted in little opportunity for tourists.

Smith continued to grow the 30th Test century, surpassing the great Sir Donald Bradman, and achieved triple figures by pulling the square leg border backwards from Anrich Nortje.

The vice-captain, however, was sacked by Keshav Maharaj, trailing 104 points in the next round, and he finished his third wicket stand of 209 laps. This marked the couple’s 10th-century partnership from 33 strokes.

Travis Head continued the game with aggressive hitting play, blasting eight fours and one six before being caught by downfielder Rassie van der Dussen in the deep square of exhausting Rabada.

Renshaw, who tested positive for COVID on the first day and had to distance himself from his teammates, struck late the day before the stumps were called.

Sick Khawaja with bats

Khawaja was undefeated in day 195, 19 quads and a six faced 368 deliveries and spent two days in the opening despite numerous delays. Queenslander’s score of 195* is her highest Test score, and she’ll be chasing her double-face first Test on Friday.

Maharaj breaks the duck

Proteas left-arm orthodox spinner Maharaj had endured a weak series before claiming Smith’s wicket, his first of three Tests. This dismissal ended Maharaj’s terrible record of 0-247 in the series with an extra 66.5.

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