Matthew Wade gave national selectors more food for thought while Cameron Green made a successful return to bowling as Tasmania held the edge in their Sheffield Shield match against Western Australia.
Wade, playing in his first Shield game of the season, hit a timely 83 to help the Tigers to 5-273 at stumps on day two chasing WA’s 302.
With contenders lining up for national spots across the summer, Wade was clearly keen to stay in the selection frame for all formats and was relatively restrained in a sometimes scratchy 159-ball (eight fours, one six) knock.
Batting at No.3, the Test incumbent was well supported in a 135-run partnership with Ben McDermott (83*) before he was stumped by Josh Inglis off the bowling of Ashton Agar (1-46).
Earlier, outstanding young talent Green picked up a wicket in just his third over, having Jordan Silk (17) caught off a rising delivery in the gully.
Recently selected primarily as a batsman in his first senior Australian squad to play India in limited overs formats next month, the allrounder hadn’t bowled in a year because of back problems.
Eased back into action with the ball, Green bowled eight overs for the day and finished with a commendable 1-15.
Charlie Wakim (43) was the first batsman to go on Saturday, caught behind by Josh Inglis off the bowling of Aaron Hardie (2-43).
Hardie had his second wicket when Jake Doran (12) was caught at short extra cover by Cameron Bancroft while Australian captain Tim Paine (12) was bowled by Lance Morris just before stumps.
STARC MOPS UP QUEENSLAND TAIL
NSW quick Mitchell Starc cleaned up the Queensland tail but his teammates failed to go on with the job with the bat as the Sheffield Shield match remains well poised.
At stumps on day two at Adelaide’s Karen Rolton Oval the Blues were 7-269 in reply to Queensland’s 298.
Peter Nevill (54*) and Trent Copeland (2*) were the unbeaten batsmen at the interval after some fireworks from Sean Abbott.
Abbott’s 66 off just 77 balls, including eight fours and three sixes, gave the NSW innings some momentum after Daniel Hughes (43), Nick Larkin (24), Kurtis Patterson (23), Moises Henriques (23) and Daniel Solway (23) all got good starts but failed to push on.
Mitch Swepson (4-92) was the pick of the Bulls’ bowlers before bad light stopped play.
Starc, who had a few fiery moments during his return to long-form cricket on Friday, added two wickets to his first-day haul on Saturday to finish with the handy figures of 4-76 from 24 overs.
It had been his first multi-day match since January.
Copeland, Abbott and Harry Conway all finished with two wickets apiece as Queensland added 24 more runs to their overnight total of 7-274.