Test cricket’s newest leader David Warner and comeback sensation Usman Khawaja have spearheaded a bold new era for Australia, raising the drawbridge at fortress Gabba with emphatic hundreds on a record-breaking day for the home side.
Warner delivered on his promise to stand up in his first match as vice-captain and Khawaja shined in a blazing return from a knee reconstruction and two and a half years in the cricketing wilderness, as Australia posted its biggest ever opening day in Brisbane to blow New Zealand out of the water.
For the third consecutive year Warner set the platform for a dominant Australian summer by posting a tone-setting ton in the opening Test, and in the process joined former captain Bill Lawry on 13 career centuries — celebrating with his customary leap towards the heavens.
After scoring his first Test century against New Zealand back in 2011, the brilliant opener yesterday smashed a glorious 163 (21 fours and one six) to fire Australia into complete control over the Black Caps at 2-389 by stumps on day one.
Khawaja in his third coming in the Test side blasted a spectacular 102 not out off 133 balls with the promise of much more to come on day two alongside captain Steve Smith (41 not out) — who passed 1000 Test runs for the calendar year.
Earlier Joe Burns and Dave Warner shared in a 163 run opening stand before Burns was dismissed for 71.
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