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Warner’s superb 166 helps Australia run up imposing total against Bangladesh

The opener was dropped on 10.

David Warner registered his second century of the World Cup (Simon Cooper/PA)
David Warner registered his second century of the World Cup (Simon Cooper/PA)

David Warner registered the highest score of the 2019 World Cup to date with a supreme 166 from 147 balls to lift Australia to an imposing 381 for five against Bangladesh at Trent Bridge.

Dropped on 10, the controversial left-hander was relatively untroubled thereafter as he went to a risk-free century off 110 balls – his second of the tournament – before cutting loose with a flurry of boundaries.

There was a sense both he and Usman Khawaja (89 from 72 balls) should have upped the tempo earlier in a 192-run stand yet they laid the platform for a late onslaught which has left Bangladesh needing to pull off a tournament record chase.

Confidence was high after they set a new national record for a successful run chase against the West Indies on Monday, but some ineffective bowling and poor fielding helped Australia to their highest score of the competition.

A fast outfield initially helped Warner and Aaron Finch, who won the toss for the first time in the tournament against a side Australia have beaten in all but one of their completed one-day internationals.

But while the Australian captain looked immediately at ease, launching Mashrafe Mortaza over cover for six, Warner struggled for fluency early on and was shelled by Sabbir Rahman, who dropped a difficult low chance to his right at backward point.

It was a costly mistake as Warner first hooked Mustafizur Rahman for six before slog sweeping Shakib Al Hasan for another maximum en route to a 55-ball half-century.

Finch needed eight fewer deliveries to reach his fifty and it was somewhat unexpected when he departed for 53, perhaps surprised by a touch of extra bounce off Soumya Sarkar and steering into the gully region.

Despite a decent platform of 121 for one on Finch’s departure, Warner and Khawaja were happy to rotate the strike, largely eschewing risk.

Indeed Warner’s second fifty contained only three fours, though once he reached three figures – which he celebrated by removing his helmet and customarily leaping in the air to a muted reception – he accelerated.

Shortly after Khawaja had moved to an unremarkable run-a-ball fifty, Warner reverse swept Shakib for four before hammering the left-arm spinner for a prodigious six.

Khawaja took four fours from a Mustafizur over before Warner went to 150 off 139 balls but, when a double century seemed to beckon, he uppercut Soumya to Rubel Hossain at short third man.

Glenn Maxwell was given licence to tee off from the start, clearing the rope three times in a predictably entertaining cameo of 32 off 10 balls before being run out, while Khawaja missed out on three figures after toe-edging a bouncer from Soumya, who finished with three for 58.

Steve Smith was pinned in front by Mustafizur to loud cheers but, after a brief rain delay, Australia will be happy with their total, amassing 131 in the final 10 overs.



From Belfast Telegraph