Historic knocks are all grounded in glory

Beating Bodyline

1. Stan McCabe, 187 not out,

Australia v England 1932

Australia were 4-87 when McCabe tasted bodyline, an English tactic designed to stop runs by bowling sustained short-pitched deliveries at the batsman's body. However, the 22-year-old had a greater concern than demon bowler Harold Larwood - he'd begged his father not to let his mother hurdle the fence to attack either Larwood or Bill Voce if they hit him. In his biography, Larwood noted McCabe was fearless: ''He rattled my first ball to the fence just in front of square-leg. Methodically, he set about pasting Bill Voce and me by stepping across the flight of bouncers and hooking them.''Last-ball century

2. Steve Waugh, 102,

Australia v England 2003

Waugh batted for his future at his home ground amid rumblings the selectors had lost faith in him. However, the public supported him with a hero's reception, and he responded magnificently. By the last ball of the day, he was one shot away from an emotion-charged century - and restoration of his reputation. England skipper Nasser Hussain prolonged the drama by stalling to ''adjust'' bowler Richard Dawson's field but, when he hit the ball, Waugh knew he'd sleep well: ''On the sporting field, I have had my fair share of failures and triumphs, but at that precise moment I hit the ball and just said to myself, 'You've done it, now take it in'.'' His 29th century, Waugh equalled the total scored by Don Bradman.Victor's victory

3. Victor Trumper, 185 not out, Australia v England 1903

Trumper took just 94 breathtaking minutes to reach 100 in the innings that historian's consider the best of his career. The opener, who honed his cricket skills in Surry Hills, hammered 26 boundaries against Pelham Warner's team. However, it has been suggested he inflicted even greater damage on the tourists that day after a recent examination of the scorebook showed his scoring strokes added up to 187. ''No one ever played so naturally,'' Warner wrote of Trumper. ''Batting seemed just part of himself, and he was as modest as he was magnificent.''Equalling Bradman

4. Sid Barnes, 234, (& Don Bradman, 234) Australia v England 1946

Bradman, Barnes said, was suffering from a gastric problem and a pulled thigh muscle when they joined forces but with Arthur Morris, Lindsay Hassett, Keith Miller and Ian Johnson dismissed, Barnes was told the Test depended on him. Barnes soon became frustrated. The Don kept the ''brake'' on him because he believed, with a free reign, he'd have rewritten the record books. When Bradman sprinted off the field after being dismissed, Barnes thought ''if you had have run like that for some of my strokes, I'd have had [Len] Hutton's record by now''. Barnes later admitted he ''threw'' his wicket when he too reached 234, because he wanted his name forever associated with Bradman's for the joint record for the highest Test score at the SCG. ''I worshipped him,'' he said.On the punt

5. Ricky Ponting, 120 & 143 not out, Australia v South Africa 2006

Ponting became the first player to score a century in each innings of his hundredth Test, and he also masterminded a humiliating defeat of the South Africans after they had declared both their innings. South Africa dominated until the last day, when Ponting punished their attack, including Andre Nel, the Aussie team's first-innings nemesis, to score almost half the 288 required for an unlikely victory. South Africa joined the West Indies as the only team to lose a Test after declaring both their innings. Ponting's 143 made him the first batsman to score five Test hundreds at the SCG.Opening up

6. Michael Slater, 123,

Australia v England 1999

Slater scored 67 per cent of Australia's 184 runs in an effort described by English journalist Christopher Martin-Jenkins as ''replete with brilliant strokes and dazzling footwork''. Fortune smiled favourably upon the home-town hero when, with Australia 2-53, he survived a run-out scare while on 35. Slater capitalised to score what would prove a match-winning innings. His driving, particularly through, or over, extra cover, was ruthless. Slater revealed he batted in the full knowledge each run in his 11th Test century was priceless. ''Once we got 200 ahead, every run felt like two,'' he said.Doug's double

7. Doug Walters, 242 & 103,

Australia v West Indies 1969

Walters injured his back before the match, when he slipped and fell down the stairs of his home as he took the rubbish out. After playing a straight bat to the doctor for the team medical, he took guard against pace aces Wes Hall and Charlie Griffith as Australia reeled at 3-51. However, with Bill Lawry anchored at the opposite end, Walters scored 242, including 24 boundaries, in 480 entertaining minutes. In the second dig, he again conquered the dispirited West Indies players to score 103. ''Not a bad match that one,'' the laconic Walters wrote of the Test.Grace under pressure

8. Graham Yallop, 121,

Australia v England 1979

Yallop was named national captain the second summer after Australia's top players defected to World Series Cricket. His reign wasn't easy; among his numerous challenges fast bowler Rodney Hogg invited him to settle a disagreement at the back of Adelaide Oval. The series was lost when he took guard with Australia 2-19, yet as wickets tumbled he focused for four gruelling hours against a battle-hardened England attack. He ultimately scored 121 of his team's 198. Journalist David Frith captured the spirit of the knock: ''It was a fine, bold innings, full of aggression blended with canny judgment, and all the more admirable for its isolation among so much failure.''Big heart

9. Percy McDonnell, 147,

Australia v England 1882

McDonnell - aka Greatheart, and the only classical Greek scholar to have captained Australia - was the first Australian player to score a century at the SCG. While he benefited from three missed chances, the 21-year-old nevertheless displayed plenty of flair. A McDonnell six narrowly missed the clock tower, but what was most remarkable about his 147 - made after a 199-run partnership with Charles Bannerman [70] - was Australia's nine other batsmen contributed only 29 to the first innings total of 262.Miller's marathon

10. Keith Miller, 145 not out,

Australia v England 1951

Miller was cricket's laughing cavalier because he valued the fun of the sport above cold, hard statistics. He would have starred in Twenty20 but, in this innings, he reached his century after 274 grinding minutes. Despite cries from the outer of ''get on with it'', Miller defied his nature to score at a ''funeral rate'', although after he put Australia in the box seat to win the Test, others viewed his effort as ''highly responsible'' . His century followed an outstanding bowling performance of 4-37 in England's first innings and also a catch described as ''brilliant''.

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