Jaques blasts 171 in tight New South Wales win
New South Wales 4 for 293 (Jaques 171*, Cutting 3-45) beat Queensland 9 for 287 (Philipson 100, Copeland 3-70) by 6 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
Phil Jaques blasted his way out of a lean patch with the second highest score in Australia's domestic one-day history to help New South Wales to a six-run win over Queensland. Jaques batted throughout the innings for an unbeaten 171 before Craig Philipson's maiden hundred gave the Bulls the chance of an upset win.
It was fitting that Philipson guided the chase after he dropped Jaques on 79 and 120 and although he fell for an even 100 near the end, the Bulls got to the final over requiring 17. A six from Ben Cutting, whose 42 from 18 balls sparked Queensland, brought the target within reach but the debutant Trent Copeland held his nerve to bowl full and straight and get the Blues home.
The star of the day was unquestionably Jaques, who 18 months ago was a member of the Test team but has battled to regain his best touch since having back surgery in late 2008. He started cautiously but began to find the gaps with ease and struck 20 fours and two sixes in his 143-ball stay, which was second only to Jimmy Maher's 187 on the list of domestic 50-over innings and gave him three entries in the top ten of all time.
It was the sort of dominant performance that will remind the Australian selectors of his presence, as well as pushing the Blues into third place on the competition table and giving them a good chance of pressing for a spot in the final. Cutting was the only Queensland bowler who proved a real danger for New South Wales and he collected 3 for 45 in the innings of 4 for 293.
In reply, the Bulls were wobbling at 4 for 58 when Philipson and Nathan Reardon started the fightback. Their 83-run stand kept the run-rate at an acceptable level before a pair of strikes from Nathan Bracken, who is gradually gaining momentum after having a knee operation, pegged Queensland back.
Cutting completed his excellent all-round game with a tail-end blitz but he didn't have enough support at the end, when the Bulls needed 34 from the final two overs. Queensland remain on the top of the table, one game clear of Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia, with two rounds left.