Hodge dominates opening day

Celebrating his call-up to the Australian squad for the second test, Brad Hodge has dominated the first day of the West Indies tour match against Victoria with a huge, blistering century.

Every West Indian specialist bowler took punishment as the Victorians piled on the runs on a flat pitch, and once again Shivnarine Chanderpaul was forced onto the defensive, bowling part-time spinner Marlon Samuels more than any of his seamers. Samuels was worth the faith though, managing to go at under 5 an over for most of his time with the ball and picking up all the wickets that fell to the bowlers on the day. Later in the day he was hit out of the attack by Hussey though, and Chanderpaul turned back to his pacemen.

The day belonged to Hodge completely, as he came to the crease in just the third over when Klinger was run out, and departed 54 overs later with more than 60% of the team score next to his name. His century came up off just 115 balls, and afterwards he improved his scoring rate even further, clearing the rope five times as he made 177 off 178 deliveries, before being caught by Daren Powell from a leading edge. Hodge was well supported by Nick Jewell, who managed a more sedate half-century.

David Hussey stole the show in the final session, hitting four more sixes as he powered to 91 not out at stumps, rubbing salt into the West Indies wounds. It was still Hodge who will make the headlines though, as he sent a clear warning to the West Indies and displayed his intimidating form ahead of a likely test debut at Bellrieve Oval later in the week.

Victoria 4/441
Brad Hodge 177, David Hussey 91*
Marlon Samuels 3/149

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