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Bancroft makes half-ton in quest to replace Warner


By AFP
Published : 07 Dec 2023 09:44 PM

Cameron Bancroft hit 53 and Marcus Harris 49 against Pakistan Thursday in their quest to become Australia's new Test opener, but neither was able to push on and make a big score.

They helped the Prime Minister's XI reach 149-2 at stumps in Canberra to trail by 242 in Pakistan's only warm-up match before the three-Test series starting in Perth next week.

The visitors declared at 391-9 after captain Shan Masood completed a double century, having resumed day two of the four-day game at Manuka Oval on 156, smashing 14 fours and six in his 201 not out.

South Australian quick Jordan Buckingham took 5-80.

Billed as a "bat-off" to replace David Warner, Bancroft and Harris got the nod to open ahead of Matt Renshaw, who is also a contender to fill the void left by the veteran when he retires.

Warner has indicated he plans to quit the longer format after the third Test against Pakistan at the Sydney Cricket Ground in January, his home venue.

Bancroft, best known for his role in the notorious "Sandpaper-gate" ball-tampering scandal in 2018, was patient in building a half-century before he was trapped lbw by KhurramShahzad.