Frustrated coach Jason Gillespie is likely to give more players an opportunity in the final stages of South Australia’s season, which hit its nadir during a humiliating one-day loss to Tasmania.
SA were skittled for 104 in Melbourne on Friday, as Test skipper Tim Paine’s 54 helped the Tigers secure a nine-wicket victory and two bonus points.
Tasmania reached 1-108 in 17.3 overs; the entire match at Junction Oval spanned just 49.3 overs.
Statistician Ric Finlay could find just two shorter ‘full’ completed games in the history of Australia’s domestic 50-over competition, underlining just how embarrassingly lopsided it was.
“The most frustrating thing is I actually sat in on the batters’ meeting … we spoke about communication, adapting to conditions,” Gillespie said.
“It was exactly, to a letter, what we were expecting as a surface.
“It’s pretty difficult to swallow.
“It’s important to change the perception of South Australian cricket … it drives me nuts when everybody kicks us while we’re down. It’s been going on for a while now.
“We’re going to do everything we can to turn that around … we have shown signs of how good we are. We are a bloody good team.”
Gillespie was appointed coach of his home state a year ago, tasked with ending an era of mediocrity and a Sheffield Shield drought dating back to 1995-96.
The former Test paceman, asked if players were now playing for contracts, replied that “any time there is poor performance positions get reviewed, in all walks of life”.
“It’s a real tricky one. We’ve got wonderful players,” Gillespie said.
“We’ll have to wait and see. We’ll get to the end of the season.
“There might be scope to give other players some opportunity … to have a look at them.
“As with continual non-performance, you look at everything.”
SA captain Travis Head, having opted to bat, was summoned to the middle in the third over after Jake Weatherald was run out for a diamond duck.
The dismissal set the tone for a disastrous innings, which ended with a collapse of 9-72.
Express paceman Riley Meredith, playing for the first time since making his international debut on Australia’s Twenty20 tour of New Zealand, was named man of the match after dismissing Head (12) and top-scorer Callum Ferguson (26) in a haul of 2-22.