In the first cricket test between Australia and the West Indies on Thursday, Steve Smith produced an unbroken 114 to tie Donald Bradman’s record of 29 test hundreds and help Australia maintain its lead.
Australia entered the break on 402-3, thanks in large part to a 251-run partnership for the third wicket that was broken when Marnus Labuschagne (204) was struck by the final delivery before lunch on the second day.
After reaching the milestone by smashing fast bowler Jayden Seales for his 20th boundary, Labuschagne was out when he edged offspinner Roston Chase. Wicketkeeper Joshua Da Silva had previously dropped Labuschagne on runs of 132 and 194.
The West Indies were desperately seeking a breakthrough as Australia began the second day on 293-2 with Labuschagne at 154 and Smith at 59, and cloudy conditions that were favourable for swing bowling.
Instead, Labuschagne and Smith carried on where they left off the previous day and steadfastly increased the suffering of the visitors, stealing the game with each run.
In his 88th test match, Smith batted excellently to tie the great Australia batting legend Bradman. For Australia, only Ricky Ponting (age 41), Steve Waugh (age 32), and Matthew Hayden (age 30) have amassed more hundreds.
Smith was more cautious and only hit nine goals in his century, which took 179 balls to complete. Following his 145 not out against Sri Lanka in Galle in July of this year, Smith scored his second century in three innings.
Since his 215 against New Zealand in Sydney in January 2020, Labuschagne has already scored two centuries. He batted for 483 minutes, making 350 balls for a six and 20 fours.
After opening batsman David Warner was cheaply dismissed on the first morning, Labuschagne and Usman Khawaja (65) put the innings on track with a 142-run second-wicket stand.
Australia chose to bat first in the first of two tests after winning the toss. Beginning on December 8, Adelaide will host the second test which will be a day-and-night match.