As Australia stumbled in the decider across the ditch, most of the Test team further enhanced their credentials by starring in the Sheffield Shield.
On The Gabba road, Cameron Green moved closer to history as he registered his maiden double century. But it wasn’t just the impressive all-rounder that made hay in Brisbane, with Marcus Labuschagne continuing on his merry way.
In Adelaide, amongst Alex Carey’s elegant century, Nathan Lyon took his first bag of the year and spoke about working towards the Ashes. Dashing opener David Warner missed out as Kurtis Patterson responded to South Australia’s big opening total.
Meanwhile, across in Melbourne Jake Doran dug in for Tasmania to give the Tigers a defendable total against Victoria.
Here is our Shield Scout from an interesting weekend of red ball cricket.
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Queensland vs Western Australia at The Gabba (day two).
It’s always been the case that you never quite know how good a wicket is until both sides bat. On that, The Gabba is a road.
After Green — dubbed “the best since Ponting” — posted 251 and shared century plus partnerships with Shaun Marsh (70) and Hilton Cartwright (96) to lead WA to 5-458, the Bulls have made a strong reply.
With a result unlikely, the Bulls will be hoping to build on their strong start and push towards first-innings points.
Labuschagne is 81 not out and has put on 128 for the second wicket with opener Bryce Street.
Axed Test batsman Joe Burns made 34 before his former teammate Cameron Green removed him.
But it was Green that was the star of the day, as he posted the seventh highest Shield score of all time by someone 21 or younger. It’s a fine list, with Don Bradman, Steve Smith and Doug Walters featuring on the list.
He also tracking towards becoming the ninth player to make 1000 runs in a season for Western Australia.
Green’s 251 also saw him move ahead of Travis Head at the top of the Shield run-makers for 2020-21.
“It’s a very nice wicket,” Green said after play. “I think there’s definitely enough in there for bowlers and batsmen.
“I think it’s so similar to the WACA, just with the pace and bounce. It’s pretty true out in the middle – a good batting wicket.”
South Australia vs NSW at Adelaide Oval (day two).
Former Test batsman Kurtis Patterson stands between South Australia and first-innings points at Adelaide Oval.
In reply to the home side’s first-innings total of 8-482, the Redbacks have the Blues 4-177.
Patterson is 86 not out and is at the crease with captain Peter Nevill (27*).
The left-hander has played a relatively lone hand for the Blues, with openers David Warner and Nick Larkin both making starts but failed to go on with it.
Moises Henriques fell for six.
Warner fell to Daniel Worrall as he attempted a tight leave and ended up getting a feather behind to Carey.
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Earlier, Carey made 125 and brought up his century with a lovely cover drive to move to three figures.
His century came days after he fell a single run short of another hundred in the Redbacks’ loss to the Blues in their one day match.
After a tough start to 2021, Lyon took his 22nd five-wicket haul of his decade-long career.
The off-spin bowler wheeled away for 45 overs, taking 5-152.
At stumps on Saturday, Lyon, who bowled Jake Weatherald with a stunning delivery that turned sharply and bounced, said he was working hard to prepare for the Ashes later this year.
“The way that Jake Weatherald batted is very similar to the way the Poms are probably going to look to play me off the back foot, and the same as Harry Nielsen,” Lyon said.
“They don’t want to get caught on the crease, so there’s a few areas in the game where I’m trying to learn and adapt in Australian conditions.
“If you look at the Ashes, from the last three Test matches over in England, a lot of lefties played me off the back foot.
“There’s a challenge there for me to bring the stumps into play, so I’m definitely thinking about it (the Ashes).
“Who isn’t thinking about it?”
Victoria vs Tasmania at the MCG (day three)
It’s all set-up for an entertaining final day at the MCG as Victoria attempt to register outright points against Tasmania.
In a low scoring affair, left-hander Doran made 98 on the back of his first-innings half-century.
Doran made 98 before James Pattinson removed him.
His 237-ball knock held the Tigers’ innings together, with first-drop Mac Wright (33) the next highest scorer.
Pattinson took five-wickets for the match while his new ball partner Scott Boland took six.
Set 253 runs to win, Victoria is 0-8 with Nic Maddinson (8) and Marcus Harris (0) at the crease.
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