MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – DECEMBER 28: David Warner of leaps in the air as he celebrates reaching his century during day three of the Second Test match between and Pakistan at Melbourne Cricket Ground on December 28, 2016 in Melbourne, . (Photo by Scott Barbour – CA/Cricket /Getty Images) Getty Images Photo: Scott Barbour – CAAs it happened: v Pakistan, Day Three
David Warner says ‘s batsmen have responded to the “kick up the backside” they received from South Africa after another strong performance with the bat on Wednesday.
‘s new-look batting line-up passed another major test on the third day when they thundered at 4.79 runs per over, to make major inroads into Pakistan’s first innings of 443.
For the third game in a row, the home side have been powered by a first-innings century from one of their three senior batsmen. In Adelaide it was Usman Khawaja, in Brisbane it was captain Steve Smith and this time it was vice-captain David Warner who led the way.
The opener crashed 144 off only 143 balls as reached 2/278 at stumps on the third day.
The strong form of ‘s senior batting core means impressive newcomer Peter Handscomb will again not have to come to the crease under enormous pressure.
The performances of the past month is in marked contrast to the diabolical batting in Sri Lanka and the first two Tests against South Africa, where regularly lost wickets in clusters.
“It also has to do with the consistency of the opposition bowling. When you look at game two against South Africa they really had us on our throats,” Warner said.
“They had the ball in the same line and length six balls in a row, consistent pressure and it is quite challenging.
“The conditions were conducive to seam bowling, and there was a lot of swing around
“You have to keep working hard in the nets. We got a big kick up the backside that series and we’ve worked hard and that’s why we’re scoring the runs now.
Khawaja needs only five more runs to join Warner in triple figures. It would be the first time this summer he has scored a century at No.3. His ton in Adelaide came as an opener.
While being not out overnight in the 90s would lead to sleepless nights for many batsmen, Warner does not think it will affect Khawaja.
“It would not bother him the slightest, Ussie is the most calm, relaxed bloke you would ever meet,” Warner said.