England went to stumps on day two at 2-218, with Tammy Beaumont firing her way to an 152-ball ton as the hosts mounted a fine response to Australia’s first-innings 473.
Beaumont’s fightback did well to temper Australia’s joy around Sutherland’s innings, after the allrounder finished unbeaten on 137 on Friday morning.
After helping Australia stabilise from a minor collapse of 3-12 on Thursday evening, Sutherland made it her morning at Trent Bridge.
She hit 16 boundaries in her knock and one big six, when she took on England’s star spinner Sophie Ecclestone late in the innings and hit her over the legside.
At age 21, Sutherland is the youngest Australian since Belinda Clark in 1991 to score a Test century.
But no Australian or Englishwoman has done it at such a young age in an Ashes Test match.
Sutherland’s hundred was also the fastest by an Australian in women’s Test history, and the first three-figure score by a player walking out at No.8.
There is no doubt Sutherland is capable of batting higher than that, with the knock her second century in a row after also scoring 116 in a warm-up match against England A.
It also continues a golden 12 months for the Victorian, who hit back-to-back centuries in the Women’s National Cricket League last summer.
Sutherland then stood up early with the ball, getting England opener Emma Lamb for 10 when she had her caught at slip in her figures of 1-28.
But after that, the momentum of the day changed and Beaumont took charge.
The right-hander constantly punished Australia as they struggled with their lengths, putting away loose balls at will and pulling with ease when Australia dropped short.
She worked the ball nicely off her pads, and brought up her maiden Test century in that fashion in the penultimate over of the day.
Australia also had errors in the field to rue.
They should have had Beaumont caught in close on 61 when she hit an Alana King ball onto her foot and into Phoebe Litchfield’s hands at short leg, but it was given not out.
Australia had the chance to review and on-field officials could have sent the decision upstairs to see if it had been a bump-ball, but neither did so.
Beaumont survived another chance on 88 when she edged Ashleigh Gardner, and it went past Jess Jonassen at slip untouched.
Gardner did claim one wicket, however, when she had Heather Knight caught behind for 57 beforeÂ Nat Sciver-Brunt went to stumps not out on 41.
A win in the five-day women’s Test would push Australia towards retention of the women’s Ashes, with the match worth four points before three ODIs and three T20s each worth two.