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Phil Hughes hits century against Vics
By Greg Buckle
19:59 AEST Sat Nov 24 2012

Former Test opener Phil Hughes hit an unbeaten 127 for South Australia on Saturday before assuring national selectors he'd be happy to bat anywhere in the top six if he wins a recall this summer.

The 23-year-old, whose weaknesses in the gully region led to his Test sacking 11 months ago, stroked 18 fours from 197 deliveries to guide the Redbacks to 2-244 at stumps on day two of their Sheffield Shield clash with Victoria at the MCG on Saturday.

South Australia trail by 102 runs with eight wickets in hand.

Hughes has shared an unbeaten third-wicket partnership of 127 with Callum Ferguson (48 not out).

Australia's problems at No.3 and No.4 in the Test series against South Africa, due to the twin failures of Rob Quiney and Ricky Ponting, could open the door for Hughes.

The diminutive left-hander, who has crossed from NSW to South Australia, is Shield cricket's leading runscorer with 479 runs at 59.87.

Hughes showed his delight at scoring his first Shield hundred for the Redbacks by removing his helmet and lifting both arms aloft to the dressing room.

Asked if it was a timely ton, Hughes grinned: "You'll have to ask the selectors."

Hughes said reaching his 20th first-class century was a special feeling, especially after missing out three times already this season with scores of 92, 95 and 83.

"I was delighted when I got to three figures, my first one for South Australia in this format so I'm really rapt about that," he said.

"I continue to work on my game and it's a really sweet moment."

And he knows the only way to add to his 17 Tests is to score lots of runs.

"That's how you get your name put up there in front of selectors and I want to continue that," he said.

Hughes said he'd batted at No.3 during the winter in English domestic cricket.

"I'm not sure what position is my right position, to be fair. It could be one to six," he said.

"Batting at the top of the order, it can be quite difficult. If slots come up anywhere in any team, I feel like I'm ready."

Victoria's new-ball attack included 20-year-old second-gamer Louis Cameron (0-43) as the Bushrangers struggled to get breakthroughs on a wicket that had flattened out on day two.

Earlier, Victoria posted a total of 346 thanks to some big hitting from No.8 John Hastings (80 off 98 balls) after resuming on 6-259.

Cameron White top-scored with 88, losing his wicket to Gary Putland (7-64) from the first delivery of the day.

Hastings said Hughes was looking very solid at the crease.

"He's pulling the ball well and I've never seen him pull like that before," Hastings said.

"He's got his game pretty well sorted out."


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