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Tim Paine finally breaks 13-year drought with his second FC century

Test captain Tim Paine has started the Australian home season on the right note, breaking his 13-year drought in first-class cricket.

In a fighting knock that pushed the Tigers to an important first-innings lead over Western Australia, the Australian wicketkeeper-batsman scored his first century in professional red-ball cricket since 2006.

While Paine has been prolific in limited-overs cricket with eight List A centuries, his knock in Perth is just the second century of his first-class career, a fact made even more astonishing considering his inaugural hundred had seen him go on to amass 215.

After losing teammate Caleb Jewell for 52 off the bowling of Joel Paris, Paine was forced to bat with the tail for much of his innings.

Yet debutant Lawrence Neil-Smith provided crucial support, hanging around with Paine in a 111-run ninth-wicket partnership to steer the gloveman to the milestone and help Tasmania to a total of 397, well past WA’s 337.

Paine would eventually fall for 121, while Neil-Smith remained unbeaten on 39.

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