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Brendon McCullum blasts fastest ton against Australia

By Robert Jones

Brendon McCullum revealed he was "trying to hit every ball for four or six" after breaking the record for the fastest Test century to lift New Zealand from a position of trouble into one of strength against Australia.

In his international swansong, the outgoing Black Caps captain reached three figures from just 54 balls, overhauling the record jointly held by Viv Richards and Misbah-ul-Haq by two deliveries.

His audacious innings, he went on to top score with 145 from just 79 balls with 21 fours and six sixes, was all the more remarkable given he walked to the wicket with the Kiwis on 32 for three after being put in by Australia on day one of the second Test at the Hagley Oval.

While pacemen Josh Hazlewood, James Pattinson and Jackson Bird had kept things tight early on, they were thrashed to all parts thanks to a devil-may-care attitude from McCullum, who went from his half-century to a hundred in just 20 balls.

Afterwards McCullum said: "I wasn't aware of the record but obviously very respectful of all those that have been there before and held it before.

"I was trying to hit every ball for four or six."

His counter-attacking masterclass in Christchurch, allied to quickfire half-centuries from Corey Anderson and BJ Watling, lifted the hosts to 370 all out, with Australia losing dangerman David Warner in reaching 57 for one in reply.

McCullum added: "We decided the best form of defence was for us to try and attack.

"It's not always going to come off but I guess today we got a bit of luck.

"I was really pleased with the courage from all of the guys=, it's not easy to go out there and play that free-spirited kind of cricket but I thought guys like BJ Watling and Corey Anderson, and even the tail as well, they really bought into that too."

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