David Warner`s double ton in 100th test powers hosts to big lead

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Facing pressure to keep his place in Australia’s team david warner Defying his critics and Heatwave status with a spectacular return to form, he scored a memorable 200 in his 100th Test.

Leading 1-0 in the three-match series, Australia South Africa resumed on Tuesday at 45-1 in sunny conditions at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in response to a 189-run first innings deficit.

At stumps, Australia were 386–3, an overall lead of 197, with Alex Carey unbeaten on nine and Travis Head unbeaten on 48.

While Australia are in a strong position, the home side’s two pacers, Mitchell Starc and first innings hero Cameron Green, are down with finger injuries ahead of South Africa’s second innings.

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Steve Smith (85) and Warner (200 retired hurt) put on an entertaining 239-run stand for the third wicket as Australia took control of the match in stifling conditions. Warner’s dramatic departure came 15 runs later, retired hurt, with a crowd of 42,614 on their feet after Smith was out at 314–3.

Joe Root of England is the only other player in Test history to score a double century in his 100th Test.

Ever the showman, Warner tried to ease leg cramps by leaping in the air to celebrate his 200, before kneeling down.

After hitting 16 fours and two sixes in his 254-ball knock in 99-degree Fahrenheit heat, Warner could not move and limped with the help of medical staff.

The 36-year-old opener looked tired and exhausted as he crossed the boundary rope, but took the last few steps without any support before collapsing on the turf.

“My back is against the wall but it is in my DNA to be competitive,” Warner said on the eve of their historic match on Sunday.

The left-handed batsman brought up his 25th Test century and first since January 2020, off 144 balls, pulling a short ball down the leg-side boundary before triggering an extraordinary ceremony in the post-lunch session.

Warner leapt in the air, waved his bat and blew a kiss to the crowd.

At tea, Australia held a 42-run advantage at 231–2.

Anrich Nortje finally ended the third wicket partnership by having Smith caught at gully at 315–3. The big speedster had narrowly escaped serious injury earlier in the day when an overhead Spidercam camera went past and collided with him, causing the fielder to fall to the turf in a bizarre incident.

Green retired hurt to reach 363-3 for six after Nortje hit his finger.

South Africa’s bowling attack also failed to finish the day as a unit, with fast bowler Lungi Ngidi walking off the field after the first ball of his 16th over with apparent cramps.

Earlier in the seventh over of the day, Warner was hit on the helmet for 47 by a bouncer from the flamboyant Nortje. The opener immediately took off his helmet and received medical treatment on the field before resuming his innings.

Warner was involved in the mix with Marnus Labuschagne, who was run out two balls later for 14 at 75-2.

Smith and Warner guided Australia to lunch on 136–2, with Warner top-scoring on 86.

Warner also became Australia’s seventh highest Test scorer on Tuesday, surpassing Justin Langer (7,696) and Mark Waugh (8,029).

Invited to bat first, the highlight of South Africa’s 189 was a 112-run partnership for the sixth wicket between Kyle Verreynne (52) and tailender Marco Jansen (59). Australia’s all-rounder Green claimed a career-best 5-27.

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