Aussie skipper Clarke joins illustrious club; England seize initiative

Australia captain Michael Clarke (left) and Ricky Ponting both made double centuries against India in Adelaide.

Story highlights

  • Australia captain Michael Clarke matches legends Wally Hammond and Don Bradman
  • Clarke becomes only the third player in history to hit double and triple centuries in a series
  • Clarke complies 210 as Australia declare first innings on 610-7 against India, who are 61-2
  • England reduce Pakistan to 256-7 on day one of the second Test against Pakistan
Michael Clarke joined an exclusive club comprising of cricket legends Don Bradman and Wally Hammond on day two of the fourth Test as Australia continued to batter India.
The Australian captain made 210 at the Adelaide Oval as he became only the third player in history to hit double and triple centuries in a series.
Clarke's knock, coupled with former captain Ricky Ponting's 221, saw Australia reach a mammoth 604-7 declared in their first innings, as they search for a 4-0 series whitewash.
By the end of play India were 61-2, as Virender Sehwag and Raul Dravid fell cheaply, and staring down the barrel of another humiliating defeat.
Clarke made 329 not out in the second Test at Sydney and said he was flattered to join an illustrious club with fellow countryman Bradman -- who ended his career with an average score per game of 99.94 -- and former England captain Hammond, who made 22 Test centuries.
"I didn't know that, but it's very nice," Clarke told reporters. "It's very special, no doubt about it. One thing I've never been very keen on is statistics and records.
"It's about helping your team win and, if things like that come along, it's very special."
Clarke and Ponting's partnership of 386 was the fourth highest of all time for Australia, with Bradman involved in all of the top three.
In Abu Dhabi, bowlers Graeme Swann and Stuart Broad each took three wickets as England grabbed the initiative on day one of the second Test against Pakistan.
Pakistan, who won the first Test of the three-match series in Dubai by ten wickets, made 256-7 at the end of play after winning the toss and opting to bat first.
Captain Misbah-ul-Haq compiled an unbeaten 83, and was ably assisted by Asad Shafiq, who made 58, but on a good batting surface England did well to restrict their opponents.
England had to wait nearly 20 overs for the breakthrough, as Swann bowled Taufeeq Umar, before Monty Panesar -- playing his first Test since July 2009 -- repeated the feat to remove Mohammad Hafeez soon after.
Broad then made his mark as he bowled Younis Khan and Azhar Ali in quick succession to leave Pakistan wobbling on 103-4.
But Misbah-ul-Haq and Shafiq steadied the ship, putting on 100 before Swann trapped Shafiq LBW. Adnan Akmal was then out in the same fashion to Broad.
Swann's dismissal of Abdur Rehman just before the close confirmed it was England's day.