Moises Henriques posts memorable Sheffield Shield ton
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Moises Henriques posts memorable Sheffield Shield ton

The state of Australian cricket suggests Moises Henriques may soon have a reason to dust off the baggy green after he drew first blood in a Test shootout in Canberra.

More importantly, the fashion in which he did it suggests this is a man for whom cricket has regained its lustre.

Moises Henriques scored a remarkable century.

Moises Henriques scored a remarkable century.Credit:Lukas Coch

More than five years since his Test debut and more than two since his fourth and last outing in the baggy green, the NSW Blues star posted a remarkable 152 to emerge as a dark horse to earn a Test recall for Australia's looming series against India.

The 178-ball ton in a Sheffield Shield showdown with Queensland at Manuka Oval on Friday  suggests Australian cricket may have stumbled on a left-field solution to its middle order woes.

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But even the 31-year-old himself hopes he would have to have a few more days like this before earning an international recall.

Henriques is adamant he has what it takes to play at Test level but the fact that Test spots are up for grabs potentially isn't the most significant thing about this century.

It is Henriques' best knock since opening up on his battle with depression last month and his carefree display hinted this is a man that has rediscovered the love of the game.

"One thing I’ve learnt through all those struggles is to try and keep cricket completely independent from how I’m feeling about life in general, although it is a big part of my life," Henriques said.

"I do know that all I can do is try my best every day and if it’s not good enough, then so be it. It’s just like a bad day, except I did my job today.

"I’d like to think I’d probably have to have a couple more days like today [to earn another Test cap], I hope they’re just handing them out on the back of one innings.

Moises Henriques in action.

Moises Henriques in action.Credit:Lawrence Atkin

"I still think I’m good enough to play at that level but I’ve got to make sure I’ve got the currency behind me as well. There’s still a long way to go yet, I’ll have another opportunity in the second innings of this game and over the rest of the season as well."

Henriques threw his name into the mix at a time when Shield runs are at a premium, and the only constant in Australia's Test team is a captain plucked from the grasps of retirement and a bowling attack that spent most of their Friday with their feet up.

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Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins and Nathan Lyon had little to do until late in the piece, but they couldn't stop the Blues from losing 6-16 late in the day. The next best to Henriques' ton was Peter Nevill's 29.

The flip of a coin robbed three Queenslanders of the chance to state their case in the capital for most of the day and Joe Burns failed to make the most of his first chance when Hazlewood had him caught behind for six.

Matt Renshaw (nine not out) only just made it to stumps after being dropped by Daniel Hughes on four, with Queensland set to enter day two at 1-23, with Marnus Labuschagne unbeaten on eight.

"I’m not sure we’re going to play on too many better day one four-day wickets, I thought we probably missed a trick there. Luckily we’ve got a decent bowling attack in this particular fixture," Henriques said.

"I think we’re a little bit below par and the game is far from over, we’re going to have to fight really hard. It’s only going to get tougher to bat."

It came as Travis Head pencilled his name into Australia's Test XI across the border with a scintillating 87 (118) for South Australia over Western Australia at Adelaide Oval.

The 24-year-old led the way against a Warriors outfit boasting embattled brothers Shaun and Mitchell Marsh, who will likely be granted entry into the Adelaide Oval dressing room come December 6.

Caden Helmers is a sports reporter for The Canberra Times

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