Recent Allan Border medallist Steve Smith continued his excellent white ball form after smashing a century for NSW against Victoria in the domestic competition.
Smith pulled out all the shots to smack 127 off 124 deliveries and a quick Pat Cummins cameo of 49 on his captaincy debut lifted NSW to 9-318 in their one-day clash with Victoria at North Sydney Oval.
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Smith, who walked to the middle during the second over, initially batted conservatively as the Blues crashed to 4-73 after 20 overs.
The classy right-hander launched a flurry of late boundaries, including a booming six off James Pattinson that sailed over the hill and out of the ground, in his innings of 127 off 124 deliveries.
Smith smashed six sixes, the most he has hit in a one-day innings for NSW or Australia.
Fans on social media were quick to praise the mercurial batsman for carrying over his impressive form from the summer.
— Avinash #SKYforICT🙏 (@GreenwoodNo11) February 15, 2021
Just a walk in the park for @stevesmith49 ,and its a nice park!
— TheBilby (@bilby361) February 15, 2021
— Cricket (@cricket_cri) February 15, 2021
Steve Smith is not human. NSW were on track for like 220 and he got us to 318. Oh my
— Angry Little Man Dan (@suthodan) February 15, 2021
Cummins takes captain role for NSW
Cummins lost the toss on Monday, with Peter Handscomb opting to bowl.
Cummins, who has been given a chance to lead the Blues' one-day side after being identified as a future national captain by Cricket Australia, was summoned to the middle in the 40th over.
The express paceman's 30-ball knock was his highest score of the summer, helping ensure NSW passed 300.
Cummins was stationed at the non-striker's end during the 46th over when Smith brought up his hundred by steering a delivery from Xavier Crone through the vacant slips cordon.
Australia's vice-captain and a leading contender to replace Tim Paine as Test skipper, Cummins shook Smith's hand and gave him a hug amid some low-key celebrations.
Crone finished with figures of 1-94 from his 10 overs.
Ollie Davies (57) lifted the run-rate for the Blues with an entertaining 41-ball knock on debut, slapping consecutive bouncers from Crone over the leg-side fence and onto the hill.
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