I waited long enough for the opportunity: North

March 1st, 2009 - 5:59 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, March 1(IANS) Australia’s Marcus North who hit a century on debut against South Africa said he had waited for the opportunity for a long time and is “hungry” to make the most of it.
The 29-year-old West Australian captain has been padded up in the wings for a decade. A good bat, he began working on his off-spin a few years back and it finally paid off when Andrew Symonds and Shane Watson were unavailable for the South African tour.

In his first crack at batting under the baggy green, North became the first Australian to score a century on debut against South Africa and the 18th overall.

And, along the way, the left-hander picked up the eighth-wicket partnership record for his 117-run stand with Mitchell Johnson.

“I think when you have been waiting for an opportunity for such a long time, once you get that you are pretty hungry to make the most of it,” he was quoted as saying in Herald Sun.

“Every time I get to play for Australia, I am going to make the most of it.”

North has scored more than 200 runs since arriving in South Africa and been dismissed only once. He also took a career-best six wickets in the second innings of the tour game.

There were some nerves but, with almost 9,000 first-class runs before pulling on the revered cap, nerves are something he’s dealt with before.

“I was a bit nervous,” he said. “I was probably more nervous waiting to go out to bat.

North was with Johnson as the 90s arrived - with rising anxiety - and he was almost caught off a mishit at 93, but the bowler chipped in to help him through.

“Mitch was good actually,” he said. “He just kept me focused on doing the job for the team and what we needed to do, and work on partnerships and just getting through, over and over.

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