Australia A crumble despite impressive Jewell century

A gallant final-day century from Caleb Jewell wasn’t enough to stop Australia A falling to defeat against New Zealand A in their four-day match in Mackay.

The visitors struggled to deal with Jewell (131) but had plenty of success with his teammates, grabbing a 68-run win with 30 overs to spare on Thursday night to seal a 2-0 series triumph.

Tasmanian opener Jewell was in imperious touch, sticking strong as wickets tumbled around him to punch out 17 fours and two sixes with none of his teammates scoring more than 19 runs.

It’s the second impressive knock of the series for Jewell, having made a stylish 78 in the opening encounter in Brisbane last month.

But it was a missed opportunity for fellow opener Cameron Bancroft, falling to Sean Solia’s bowling for just 16 as he failed to advertise his credentials to replace retirement-headed Test opener David Warner.

The four-day portion of the tour hasn’t been brilliant for former 10-Test opener Bancroft, averaging 21 runs across four innings.

For New Zealand, Scott Kuggeleijn and William O’Rourke each grabbed three wickets, while Solia got the prized scalps of Bancroft and Josh Phillippe.

With NZ keeper Mitchell Hay absent hurt, Australia only needed three balls to wrap up their innings to start the day with Liam Hatcher picking up the final scalp.

The sides now move on to a three-game 50-over series, the first to be played in Mackay on Sunday.

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