Steve Smith scores ton for Blues against Tasmania
A Gritty Steve Smith century has helped put NSW in control of their Sheffield Shield cricket clash with Tasmania in Sydney.
Smith scored 102 and added 186 for the third wicket with fellow century-maker Moises Henriques as NSW finished day two at Drummoyne Oval on 2-275, a lead of seven.
It was Smith's first century for the Blues in almost two years - he scored a ton in his last Shield game in Sydney prior to his ball-tampering ban.
Blues paceman Mitchell Starc boosted his chances of a Test recall, taking 3-4 early on Saturday to finish with 5-40 off 24.3 overs as Tasmania were dismissed for 268 after starting the day at 6-258.
A circumspect Smith advanced from 25 to 45 in the middle session, when NSW added just 51 runs on a slow wicket, but with Henriques alongside upped the tempo as the pair piled on 174 runs.
Smith, who struck 11 boundaries, took 156 balls for his first 50 but just another 79 to bring up three figures.
Former Australia all-rounder Henriques, unbeaten on 116, produced the most fluent batting of the match - striking 12 fours and four sixes to generate some much-needed momentum.
The aggressive right-hander gave Smith a 38-run and 118-ball head start, but overtook his illustrious partner in the mid-60s.
He has already cracked a dozen boundaries and four sixes in his 175-ball stay.
Earlier, Test opener David Warner fell for one before lunch, slashing a Sam Rainbird delivery outside off stump through to wicketkeeper Tim Paine.
In his past 13 first-class innings, Warner has been dismissed for 11 or fewer 11 times, a slump briefly offset by one half-century and a solitary hundred.
Rainbird (2-47) also dismissed opener Daniel Hughes, who was caught at backward point off for 39 after adding 88 with Smith.
Middle-order Test aspirant Kurtis Patterson hasn't batted yet for NSW after aggravating his quadriceps injury on Thursday.