Australia captain Steve Smith blasted the highest individual one-day international score at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Sunday.
Smith’s 164 from 157 balls eclipsed the previous high score of 162 by South Africa champion AB de Villiers, who plundered the West Indies during the 2015 World Cup almost two years ago.
Quick Single: First ODI - match report
It was a remarkable innings by the 27-year-old, who now owns the equal best ODI score by an Australian captain, joining Ricky Ponting who also made 164 in the unforgettable “438” game against South Africa in 2006.
“It’s a nice feeling,” Smith told Wide World of Sports. “I had a bit of luck but you’ve got to take that when you get it and make the most of it.”
“The new ball nipped around a little bit so I had to get through that period and then things got a little bit easier from there.
“It’s satisfying to get a big score and particularly on my home ground.
Quick Single: Steve Smith exclusive: Why we fined Maxwell
“It was nice to get a big score on my home ground. I love batting here, it’s a great place to play and a great place to play in front of my family.”
Batting at first-drop, Smith was in the action early when opener Aaron Finch was bowled for a golden duck from just the third ball of the innings.
The fidgety right-hander hit his third ball to the fence, timing Black Caps quick Matt Henry to the cover boundary for the first of his 14 fours.
Smith had some luck when on 13, dropped down the leg-side by wicketkeeper BJ Watling before surviving an lbw appeal from Trent Boult’s bowling that would have been overturned had New Zealand opted for a review.
Two balls later Smith lifted Henry over the midwicket hence for the match’s maiden maximum.
The drop would ultimately cost the visitors 151, as the skipper shifted gears from first to fifth perfectly in 46.4 overs at the crease.
His first came in 70 balls, the next 50 and the last just 18 deliveries.
Upon reaching his seventh ODI century, Smith pumped his fist in muted celebration before raising both hands, removing his helmet and saluting the standing ovation from the adoring crowd.
He was dropped again on 152 – by Colin de Grandhomme at square leg – but by then the damage had well and truly been done.
With the overs counting down and fatigue setting in, Smith clocked three monster sixes before falling in the 48th over looking to whip Boult outside off stump to fine leg but a leading edge was caught by Colin Munro to end the wonderful innings.
In the Black Caps' innings, the skipper's memorable day continued, with this incredible grab to remove BJ Watling.
International cricket is more affordable than ever this summer, with adult tickets from $30, kids from $10 and family packages from $65 across every day of international cricket. Price for purchase at match. Transaction fee from $6.95 applies to online and other purchases. For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.