Alex Carey's staggering career-high as under-fire Aussie silences cricket critics

The Australian wicket-keeper's unbeaten 98 in the second innings saw him receive man of the match honours.

Alex Carey has silenced his critics with a match-winning 98 not out to help Australia pull off a brilliant run chase in the second Test against New Zealand. Carey was named man of the match for his heroics with the bat, combining with Mitch Marsh - who made 80 - to get Australia over the line and wrap up the Test series against the Black Caps 2-0.

Ahead of the second Test, many suggested that it was a matter of time before wicket-keeper Josh Inglis took Carey's spot in the side after he had struggled to make runs of late. In the first Test against New Zealand, Carey failed to fire with scores of just 10 and 3.

Alex Carey has silenced the doubters with a clutch 98 not out in the second innings to help Australia win the second Test against New Zealand. Image: Getty
Alex Carey has silenced the doubters with a clutch 98 not out in the second innings to help Australia win the second Test against New Zealand. Image: Getty

Meanwhile, Inglis shone at Sheffield Shield level, scoring 47 and 136 not out in Western Australia's 146-run win over Queensland last week. Inglis has been in fine form this summer and after some stellar ODI and T20 performances for Australia, pundits such as Ricky Ponting had begun talking about him putting a strong case forward for being the Aussie wicket-keeper in all forms of the game.

"He (Inglis) made a brilliant hundred in this last Shield game for WA, you know, he's not put a foot wrong in the coloured clothing for Australia, whether it's in T20 cricket or One Day International cricket. His keeping his elite," Ponting told SEN.

But on Monday Carey silenced his critics with his highest ever second innings score. His century partnership with Mitch Marsh helped lead Australia to a remarkable victory and went a long way in showing that his place in the Test side is warranted.

Australia continue dominance over New Zealand

Australia pulled off an unlikely victory on Monday, thanks largely to their middle order coming up trumps. Carey and Marsh did the business for Australia after they stumbled to 4-34 before reaching 7-281 to win.

Combining after the early loss of Travis Head (18) at 5-80, Marsh and Carey put on 140 runs together - the biggest partnership of the series, when the pressure to perform was at an all-time high. Then Pat Cummins chipped in alongside Carey to bring up the win, scoring a handy 32 off 44 himself, which included a match-winning four that robbed his teammate of a mighty ton.

Australia's Pat Cummins (R) and Alex Carey celebrate their victory on day four of the second Test cricket match between New Zealand and Australia at Hagley Oval in Christchurch on March 11, 2024. (Photo by Sanka Vidanagama / AFP) (Photo by SANKA VIDANAGAMA/AFP via Getty Images)
Australia's Pat Cumminsand Alex Carey celebrate their victory on day four of the second Test. (SANKA VIDANAGAMA via Getty Images)

The win is the latest in Australia's long record of dominance over the Kiwis, who are without a home win over their arch-rivals in 31 years. The Aussies also overcame their dire record when chasing totals of 200 or more. Since 2016 - when they made 201 on the same ground to defeat New Zealand - Australia had only chased down a total of 200 or more once in 16 attempts - the first Ashes Test in Edgbaston last year.

Black Caps pay for 'horrible' Rachin Ravindra drop

Marsh and Carey combined for a game-winning partnership after Ravindra gave the former a massive reprieve. After play in Christchurch was delayed by light rain on Monday morning, Australia resumed at 4-77 with Marsh and Travis Head at the crease.

The Black Caps haven't beaten Australia in New Zealand in 31 years, and they were hoping to make more early inroads as day four commenced. But things started horribly for the hosts after Ravindra dropped a simple chance on the first ball of the day's play.


With Marsh on 27, he slashed the ball straight to Ravindra at backward point. But the Kiwi youngster dropped the opportunity, which came at chest height and simply just should have been taken.

"You cannot drop those ones," Brendon Julian said in commentary for Fox Cricket. Mark Richardson added: "Dangerous player and he's given you a chance early."

with AAP

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