Vics defy NSW on day one, Queensland rout Tasmania
Cellar-dwelling Victoria found form with the bat to defy both the New South Wales bowling attack and the Sheffield Shield standings as state red ball cricket resumed on Friday.
Needing a win to keep alive any chance of making the final, the Vics reached an impressive 5-318 at the end of day one against the unbeaten Shield leaders at the SCG.
It was a mixture of grit and attack from Victoria with Nic Maddinson leading the way with a free-flowing 95.
Travis Dean displayed character by returning to the middle in the third session to end the day unbeaten on 35 off 114 balls.
The opener had been forced off early in the day on 11 after suffering a fierce blow to the groin off the bowling of Trent Copeland.
Seb Gotch was also watchful to end the day on 59 not out from 158 balls.
Middle-order pair Peter Handscomb and Matt Short chipped in with 41 and 44 respectively.
Despite expectation that the newly-introduced Dukes ball would assist the pacemen, it was the spin duo of Nathan Lyon and Steve O'Keefe who did the bulk of the work.
Test spinner Lyon claimed 3-86 but left-armer O'Keefe (1-49) claimed the key wicket of Maddinson, who was stumped just before tea.
Ashes Test opener Marcus Harris made just seven before he was the first wicket of the day to fall, lbw to Harry Conway (1-48).
Victoria named Wil Parker in their side as the spinner became the fourth-youngest player to debut for Victoria, with the 17-year-old replacing the injured Jon Holland.
At the Gabba, Tasmania may have claimed the prized scalp of Queensland's Marnus Labuschagne but they had little else to celebrate on the opening day of their Sheffield Shield clash after suffering a remarkable batting collapse.
At stumps, the Bulls were 2-115 with an overall lead of 37 despite the loss of Australia's reigning Test Player of the Year Labuschagne for 26 after routing the Tigers for just 78 – their third-lowest Shield total.
Stubborn opener Bryce Street was unbeaten on 41 while Bulls skipper Usman Khawaja was not out 16 as Queensland comfortably survived 50 overs – almost 13 overs more than the capitulating Tigers could manage on a dramatic Friday morning.
After being sent in to bat on a classic Gabba green top, Tasmania remarkably lasted just 37.2 overs before being bowled out for their lowest total since being dismissed for 63 by Western Australia in 2017.
Adding further insult, extras was the top scorer for the visitors with 31 after just one batsman made double figures – No.3 Charlie Wakim (11 off 50 balls).
Queensland's Test hopeful Michael Neser was the chief destroyer, finishing with an impressive 4-18 off 12 overs.
He was well supported by all-rounder Jack Wildermuth (3-17 off 10) while Mark Steketee (2-13) helped mop up the tail.
Meanwhile, half-centuries from Tom Cooper and Harry Nielsen helped South Australia revive and reach a competitive position at Adelaide Oval.
South Australia ended day one at 8-352, having recovered from 2-25 and 5-143 after being sent in to bat.
Cooper led the way but the veteran missed out on his 14th first-class century after being bowled by Joel Paris on 99.
Along with wicketkeeper Nielsen (53), Cooper helped SA counter-punch with an 80-run stand for the sixth wicket.
The tail also added invaluable runs late on with Chadd Sayers ending on 38 not out and Daniel Worrall unbeaten on 19.
Earlier, Jake Weatherald scored a composed 60, while Test batsman Travis Head compiled a confident 46, including seven fours.
Western Australia's seamers enjoyed plenty of dividends for the first half of the day with the Dukes ball, which was introduced for the second part of the Shield season.
Paris and David Moody both returned 3-70, while wicketkeeper Josh Inglis claimed three catches, as did Shaun Marsh at second slip.
With just one victory from six outings, the Redbacks need to win the match if they are to stay in touch with second-placed WA and remain in the hunt for a berth in next month's final.
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