Southampton: England batsman Zak Crawley had a nagging feeling early in his innings that a hundred was on the cards before he powered on to realise his dream of a first test century with a sparkling unbeaten 171 against Pakistan at the Rose Bowl on Friday.
Crawley's career-best score in first-class cricket led England to 332-4 at the close of the opening day of the third and final test, as he put on an unbeaten 205 for the fifth wicket with Jos Buttler (87 not out).
The 22-year-old Crawley had spoken in the second test of targeting a maiden five-day hundred, but a lack of concentration saw him dismissed for 53 in England's only innings when the milestone had looked on as the game meandered to a draw.
There were no such lapses from the Kent batsman on Friday as he looked confident, organised and in command from the moment he strode out at first wicket down and then, with Buttler, helped England recover from a precarious position at 127-4.
Asked about his toughest part of the day, Crawley says it was not getting carried away with the feeling that a hundred was there for the taking very early in his innings.
Crawley's organisation at the crease was evident as he barely played a false stroke in a chanceless knock.