Smith century leads Australia recovery in Ashes opener

01 Aug, 2019 11:44 pm

BIRMINGHAM, England (Reuters) – Australia’s Steve Smith struck a superb 144 on his return to the side as they recovered from 122-8 to reach 284 all out against England in the first innings of the first Ashes Test before the hosts saw out two overs unscathed at Edgbaston on Thursday.

David Warner, who was banned along with Smith and Cameron Bancroft following a ball-tampering scandal, was out for two before Bancroft (8) fell, and Chris Woakes dismissed Usman Khawaja (13) as Australia went into the lunch break at 83-3.

England’s Jimmy Anderson did not return after lunch due to injury but the wickets continued to fall, leaving Australia struggling at 122-8, but Smith, who had earlier survived one of several incorrect on-field decisions, led the recovery.

He completed an emotional century — his 24th Test 100 — before being bowled out by Stuart Broad, who finished with 5-86, before England’s Rory Burns and Jason Roy survived a brief spell at the crease, with the home side at 10-0 at the close of play.

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