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Tim Paine let David Warner bat longer than planned to beat Don Bradman’s top score of 334, but Brian Lara’s world record of 400 was always out of the question.
Warner’s shot at 400 was denied at the Adelaide Oval on Saturday, as Paine declared Australia’s innings on 3-589 and Warner unbeaten on 335 against Pakistan.
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The left-hander on Saturday night backed the call, revealing he’d been aware of the plan for an hour before the declaration with the team needing to prioritise a win.
However, he admitted there was a slight change in the plan.
With the planned declaration time at 5:40pm and Warner motoring on 330no, Paine left him out there for one more over to reach the second highest score by an Australian and go past Bradman and Mark Taylor.
“I came in during that (tea) break and asked ‘when are we declaring?; and they said around 5.40,” Warner revealed.
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“So I kept on asking when we were out there. We got to 5pm, 5:10 and I was making sure that that was still the message.
“And it was until that last over before it just ticked over and Painey wanted me to try and get past that 334 mark.
“To achieve passing Sir Donald Bradman’s highest Test score … It’s something in the back of your mind you never think you’re going to get yourself.”
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Bradman’s 334 wasn’t the only mark Warner bettered, as his triple-century over took The Don’s record of 299no as the highest Test score at the Adelaide Oval.
In a tough day for the country’s greatest ever batsman, Steve Smith also surpassed his mark of 6996 runs to go down to 12th on the all-time Australian list.
Meanwhile Warner would still likely have needed close to another hour to challenge Lara’s mark, taking Australia towards the dinner break.
No doubt front and centre of Paine’s mind was rain forecast over the remaining days, and the 60 points on offer for a win in the World Test Championship.
Warner though insisted it was the right one, as Australia’s bowlers made use of the extra overs before stumps to leave Pakistan reeling at 6-96.
“We really looked at the weather that is around (Sunday),” Warner said.
“It wasn’t a thing in our mind to go out there and try and get that record. It was more about putting our team in a great position to try and win the Test
“If there is a bit of rain about tomorrow the bowlers get a good rest, then you only have to get 14 wickets in the last two days.”