Oz opener Hughes gets back into his groove quickly

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Sussex (UK), June 27 (ANI): Australian opener Phillip Hughes was once again amongst the runs, 13 days before the first Ashes Test against England to be played at Cardiff from July 8.

Hughes, Ponting and Clarke all passed 70 and the Australians declared their second innings against Sussex with a lead of 417 so as to give the bowlers a second crack at the county batsmen on Saturday.

There are, according to the Herald Sun, some concerns about the middle order, where all-rounder Marcus North laboured for almost an hour to graft 11 runs from 50 balls. Michael Husseymassed 40 before he was bowled by 20-year-old leg-spinner Will Beer.

The conditions at Hove, which are said to closely resemble the Cardiff pitch, were slow and there was some turn out of the rough, but Hughes, Ponting and Clarke all played powerful innings, none more than the Australian captain Ponting who sent one ball soaring out of the ground.

Hughes top-scored with 78 but lost his middle stump for the second time in three days attempting an audacious shot to sharp seamer Pepler Sandry.

The Australian openers put on 93 for the first wicket and Hughes punched 11 fours including a trademark cut to bring up his half-century.

His most extravagant shot proved his undoing. "The leg cleared out a bit there. It would have been nice to get another boundary or block that one, but that's fine," said Hughes. By Sarada Lahangir (ANI)

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