Australia v India ODIs - Men
Super Smith smashes second straight 62-ball century
Another extraordinary innings from Steve Smith, who in this Dettol series has scored Australia's third fastest ODI ton - twice
Sam Ferris at the SCG
29 November 2020, 06:20 PM AEST
Steve Smith proved his blazing 62-ball hundred on Friday was no fluke by doubling down with another brilliant century from the exact same number of balls on Sunday.
Smith was scratchy in the early stages of the first Dettol ODI Series clash but today he looked in complete control from ball one, toying with India's bowlers in stifling heat.
Sensational Steve 😍 #AUSvIND pic.twitter.com/oDpU50qjOM— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) November 29, 2020
The right-hander reached three figures from the final ball of the 41st over and could have broken his previous best had batting partner Marnus Labuschagne not slipped when turning for what would have been his 100th run.
Instead, Smith settled for another 62-ball hundred.
A sold out, half-full Sydney Cricket Ground rose as one when Smith brought up the milestone, comprised of 13 fours, two sixes, 28 singles and four twos.
Smith has now hit the third-fastest men's ODI hundred for Australia twice, behind only Glenn Maxwell (51 balls) and James Faulkner (57).
FASTEST MEN'S ODI CENTURIES BY AUSTRALIANS
Glenn Maxwell - 51 balls v Sri Lanka, Sydney, 2015
James Faulkner - 57 balls v India, Bangalore, 2013
Steve Smith - 62 balls v India, Sydney, 2020*
Steve Smith - 62 balls v India, Sydney, 2020
Matthew Hayden - 66 balls, v South Africa, St Kitts, 2007
Smith said he rated today's innings even higher than Friday's, explaining the SCG wicket was a little slower and more difficult to score on.
"It was nice to score another quick one and put us in a good position," he told Fox Cricket before India's innings.
Smith was 30 from 30 balls in the series opener and today he got set to be 21 from 21 before putting his foot down to reach his half-century from just 38 deliveries.
It was carnage from then on. Sublime drives through the covers and lofted shots straight down the ground peppered the boundary rope, while he kept ticking the scoreboard over with singles that continued to put the flat Indian fielders under pressure.
Needing to score 12 runs from four deliveries to beat Friday's feat, he took leg-spinner Yuzvendra Chahal for two to long on, then belted him over his head for six, then two more to the leg-side to be on 98 from 60 balls.
A punch to wide long-on looked to be enough for the ton, but as Labuschagne turned for the second he lost his footing to leave Smith on 99 and draw a groan from the crowd.
Labuschagne got off strike the following ball to allow Smith to drive to long on for his century, the 11th for his country in 50-over cricket and his fourth against India.
It was third in a row against Virat Kohli's charges having scored 131 in the third ODI of Australia's away series in India earlier this year.
Unlike Friday, when he was dropped on 38, Smith's innings today was faultless.
The only mishap was when he was on nine and David Warner was run out by a bullet of a throw from Shreyas Iyer at long off that hit the stumps at the non-striker's end with the left-hander short of his ground coming back for second run.
He was unfazed from there though, combining with Labuschagne to post a 138-run third-wicket stand before he was dismissed, caught at a short third man having slipped over trying an audacious lofted late cut.
Dettol ODI Series v India 2020
Australia ODI squad: Aaron Finch (c), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey , Pat Cummins (vc), Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Moises Henriques, Marnus Labuschagne, Glenn Maxwell, Daniel Sams, Steven Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Andrew Tye, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa
India ODI squad: Virat Kohli (c), Shikhar Dhawan, Shubman Gill, KL Rahul (wk), Sanju Samson (wk), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Mayank Agarwal, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Navdeep Saini, Shardul Thakur.
First ODI: Australia won by 66 runs
Second ODI: November 29, SCG, 2.40pm AEDT
Third ODI: December 2, Manuka Oval, 2.40pm AEDT
*The matches and travel remain subject to any relevant government restrictions or requirements