New South Wales v South Australia, Ryobi Cup, Sydney

Khawaja hundred sets up New South Wales victory

ESPNcricinfo staff

December 12, 2010

Comments: 8 | Text size: A | A

New South Wales 6 for 317 (Khawaja 121, Maddinson 65, Edmondson 3-70) beat South Australia 8 for 314 (Klinger 103, Christian 85, O'Brien 52, Bollinger 3-59) by 3 runs

Usman Khawaja cuts during his century, New South Wales v South Australia, Ryobi Cup, Sydney
Usman Khawaja finished with 121, his first one-day century © Getty Images

Usman Khawaja's maiden one-day century set up a dramatic three-run victory for New South Wales over South Australia at North Sydney Oval. Michael Klinger's century and a late blitz from Daniel Christian looked set to ensure the Redbacks would pass their target of 318, but the Blues held on thanks to a terrific final over bowled by Brett Lee.

South Australia needed eight from the last over, and it began with the key wicket of Aaron O'Brien, who was caught behind for 52. With the established man gone, Tim Ludeman and Gary Putland couldn't manufacture a win for the visitors, who had also had to contend with Doug Bollinger (3 for 59), fired up by his axing from the Test team.

The narrow victory almost mirrored the difference at the halfway mark, when the Redbacks at 3 for 105 fell just short of claiming one point, taken by New South Wales, who had made 1 for 110. The star was Khawaja, who missed out on a Test call-up on Friday but made sure he will remain in the selectors' thoughts with 121 from 105 deliveries.

It was only Khawaja's eighth one-day match, as he has mainly been used in the longer formats by the Blues. He was ably supported by another young batting star on the rise, Nic Maddinson, who made 65 from 56 balls to help New South Wales to their strong total of 6 for 317.

Klinger's patient 103 set up South Australia's chase, which was given a monstrous boost by the in-form Christian, who enjoyed the small dimensions of the ground and slammed 85 from 40 balls, including six sixes. But in the end it wasn't enough, and New South Wales have jumped to the top of the Ryobi Cup table.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Okakaboka on (December 13, 2010, 10:46 GMT)

@Meety.....AAAhhhhhhh!!!!!! You ruined it!!! This is a good one day team...except one! What are you thinking??????? Mackay in...and..CLARKE OUT!!! So far out he is in Antartica! Now you have a bowling attack ...and Mackay will make more runs and 5 times more quickly than Clarke. I would also rotate Tait and Nannes. Keep them both fit.

Posted by Meety on (December 13, 2010, 0:29 GMT)

Wow - I have rated Khawaja for a while now, but never considered him ODI material..... until now. Christian has got to be in our 2 limited over squads, I am liking his stats in 1st class cricket too! 85 off 40 against an attack that has 6 internationals in it is nothing to be sneezed at. Before Khawaja's 121, I was thinking an opening batting combo of Christian & Smith to blast from the top. The reality is though you need proven batsmen at the top not just pinch hitters. So Oz WC line up of 1. Khawaja, 2. Watto, 3. Punter, 4. Clarke, 5. White 6. M. Hussey 7. Haddin, 8. Smith, 9. Christian, 10. Lee, 11. Johnston/Tait

Posted by   on (December 12, 2010, 23:56 GMT)

@ PlayingIt Striaght +1! They have earnt their place already. Lee added to that, even Aaron OBrien would make a great ODI bowling a/r

Posted by PlayingItStraight on (December 12, 2010, 22:23 GMT)

If the Aus selectors are serious about the World Cup next year, they should start picking the players now that are going to make the team, such as Khawaja and Christian - put the older blokes out to pasture!

Posted by nzcricket174 on (December 12, 2010, 11:44 GMT)

A young NZ cricket fan here hoping Khawaja will play for Australia one day. Exciting young talent.

Posted by   on (December 12, 2010, 10:11 GMT)

khwaja serves a reminder again to AUS selectors and its about time he is picked and they start developing the side for future.. in all fiarness, he should ahve got the nod ahead of hughes..his ton's timing cudnt be any better..he needs to be in setup from now on...keep piling the runs khwaja... ur chance cnt be far off..

Posted by popcorn on (December 12, 2010, 9:47 GMT)

The more I see and hear and read about Usman Khwaja, the more I am convinced that he will get his Baggy Grren NO LATER THAN THE START OF THE BANGLADESH SERIS,that follows The Ashes.

Posted by Something_Witty on (December 12, 2010, 9:15 GMT)

Brett Lee needs to be back in the ODI side ASAP. End of story. Nice innings from Khawaja, but Christian was absolutely amazing, you really got the feeling that every ball he faced would go for a four or six. Yes it was a tiny Mickey Mouse ground, but you've still gotta hit it somewhere near the middle.

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