Cardiff:Australian batsman Marcus North said in the moments leading to his hundred he suffered from breathing problem which nearly denied him his median Ashes century.
North hit an unbeaten 125 to help Australia post a daunting first innings total against England in the first Test but the lanky left-hander said he had almost succumbed to his nerves.
The 29-year-old Victorian reached his century in a strange fashion as he made an unnecessary dive while stealing a single which eventually brought up his hundred.
"Leading into that I could hardly breathe I was that nervous," North was quoted as saying by the 'Courier Mail'.
"I guess the emotion was kind of taking over a little bit and once I hit that ball through gully, I saw there was an opportunity for two.
"Looking back on it now, I don't know why I put the big dive in. I wasn't really looking at the ball. It was probably more panic than anything else and relief to finally get there.
"It is something that I will remember forever," he added.
England were 20 for two in their second innings when rain played spoilsport and washed away the fourth session on Saturday leaving Australia just eight wickets away from a deserving win.