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Ferguson blasts maiden Twenty20 century

05 August 2018

Veteran Australian crashes 55-ball hundred, his first in the shortest format, for table-topping county T20 side

South Australian Callum Ferguson posted his maiden Twenty20 century in the United Kingdom's domestic T20 competition, leading Worcestershire to a comprehensive victory on Saturday.

Ferguson's terrific county limited-overs form continued as he notched triple-digits for the first time in the format off the penultimate ball of the Rapids' innings, finishing unbeaten on 102.

The 33-year-old's 135-run second-wicket partnership with allrounder Moeen Ali, who blasted four sixes on the way to 65 off 36 balls after being released from England's Test squad, propelled Worcestershire to 2-206.

It proved too many for the Dan Christian-captained Nottinghamshire as they folded for 134 to hand the visitors a comfortable 72-run win, which saw Worcestershire remain atop the north group's standings.

Ferguson's first T20 hundred comes after two monster one-day centuries for Worcestershire earlier in the season; he followed up a record-breaking 192 in May with an unbeaten 159 two games later, becoming the first batsman to post two 150-plus scores in the 50-over competition.

In 87 T20s before Saturday's match, he had never scored more than 71 but said he's relished the chance batting at No.3 with Worcestershire.

"I'm enjoying my time here," said Ferguson, who hit two sixes and 10 fours in his 56-ball knock. "I've played most of career in Australia batting the middle order, so I have really enjoyed the opportunity to bat higher up the list.

"There is a lot of belief in the dressing room and I guess some of that rubs off on you as an individual.

"When you get the chance to bat with Moeen Ali when he is in that kind of mood it helps too."

Moeen added: "I was a bit lucky, but Fergie was outstanding. He kept finding the boundaries to take pressure off me."

Four of the 12 tons scored in the UK's T20 competition this season have now been scored by Australians, with Aaron Finch, who has posted unbeaten knocks of 131 and 117 for Surrey, and Christian, who struck a 40-ball 113 for Notts last month, leading the way.

"Nottinghamshire are a really good side and that was a big game for us," Ferguson said. "It was a really good performance and sets us up nicely for the rest of the competition."

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Ferguson earned a Test debut against South Africa in November 2016 but a mass cleanout of the side after that match in Hobart, where Australia slumped to their fifth straight Test defeat, meant the batsman has not had further opportunities in the Baggy Green.

The right-hander played the last of his 33 international limited-overs games in 2011, holding the credible ODI batting average of 41.43, and has not given up hope of a return to national colours.

"I played 30 ODIs and had a good time of it in international cricket," Ferguson, last summer's third-leading JLT Sheffield Shield run scorer with 780 at 48.75, said recently. "I really enjoyed my time.

"I haven't played as much in recent years as I would have liked, but it's certainly something I'm keen to get back to and I'm hoping playing over here, getting some experience in the UK and making some runs as well might help my case.

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"I'm only 33 and we've seen in recent years that Australia haven't shied away from picking players out of domestic competitions of a similar age like Chris (Rogers), Adam (Voges) and Shaun Marsh.

"It is really exciting to see that and always gives you a bit of hope of 'make the runs and you are going to get rewarded'."

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Callum Ferguson

England Domestic T20 2018