It took 13 years for Tim Paine to score a second first-class century but just 12 months to score his third as the Test skipper warmed up for a showdown with Virat Kohli this summer by reaching triple figures for Tasmania.
Paine had hardly been without a bat in his hand before and during the clash with the hapless South Australians, desperate for a big score as a mark of his intent after a long winter off.
The national captain was taking throwdowns at every interval, in the nets or not, and his practice made something close to perfect in a 191-ball century he brought up with a powerful pull shot for four.
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The Aussie skipper looked in excellent touch.Source:Getty Images
His celebrations were muted, limited to his helmet coming off and raising his bat to his teammates, but it was an innings that no doubt meant a lot.
Paine even defied a hard shot to his elbow when he was on 41, as Redbacks quick Wes Agar did his best to rough the Tassie skipper up.
There was little doubt it hurt Paine, who took some time to shake it off.
But in Agar’s next over Paine his back-to-back boundaries to pass 50, before reaching 100 just after the drinks break on day three as he started to run out of partners with Tasmania bossed the game at Karen Rolton Oval in Adelaide.
It was Paine’s second Shield hundred in 12 months, his last coming in October last year against WA, but 13 years after his maiden first-class century in 2006. He is yet to reach triple-figures at Test level, with a highest score of 92 among his seven half-centuries.
Paine declared when he was unbeaten on 111, Tasmania on 8-493 and his side 298 runs in front. Tassie finished the day still 205 runs ahead, with SA 2-93, needing a big final day innings from their own skipper to avoid a second straight defeat.
Tim Paine congratulates Jake Doran after the young gun reached his century.Source:Getty Images
The captain’s century overshadowed teammate Jake Doran who scored his second hundred as the Tigers took the Redbacks bowlers apart.
“He works extremely hard and the way he goes about his training is what everyone looks up to,” Doran said of Paine.
“He’s always making sure he gets the best out of us as well. He’s a great role model for the whole team.
“He kept telling me he was struggling with his timing, but he kept hitting boundaries.”
Adding to the SA struggles, never before, in 414 matches, had four batsmen made at least 76 in a Tasmanian Shield innings.
South Australia coach Jason Gillespie said the Rebacks had to stick with young leg-spinner Lloyd Pope who typified his team’s struggles and looked a long way off the bowler who started by taking five wickets against WA.
Bowling too many hittable half-trackers – Paine smashed him for a massive six – Pope finished with 2-203 from 44 overs looking way off the first-class pace.
It was a frustrating day for South Australian leg-spinner Lloyd Pope.Source:Getty Images
“Lloyd was tossing it up looking to spin the ball. I thought he bowled well for periods of time but the challenge is to string some more consistency together,” Gillespie said.
“He’s learning and he’s working really hard at his game. he has all the support in the world and I’ve sen signs of progress
“We’ll give him as many opportunities as we can to learn and develop.”
Redbacks captain Travis Head also took a blow to his finger while fielding, but after leaving the field for treatment returned to skipper his ailing side.
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