Harris and Tait snuff out Tasmania's light
South Australia 218 (Lehmann 53) beat Tasmania 198 (Butterworth 44) by 20 runs
In a surprising turn of events, South Australia defended a low total of 218 by beating Tasmania by 20 runs at Adelaide. This left Tasmania's fate in the hands of Victoria, who require only two points to edge ahead of Tasmania and clinch a place in the finals, where Queensland awaits. But New South Wales, Victoria's opponents, will turn up a full-strength side including Glenn McGrath and Michael Clarke, so there is yet hope for Tasmania.
Lehmann had scored a fighting 53 to haul South Australia to 218 from a perilous 4 for 115. His rescue effort came after a blazing start by Greg Manou, who ran up 43 off 36 balls and was involved in an opening stand of 65 in 9.4 overs. Damien Wright then prised out two wickets in three balls to start the rot. South Australia's problems were compounded further when Nathan Adcock and Mark Higgs fell within two runs of each other (4 for 115). However, Lehmann's controlled batting, in which he eschewed his shots due to an injury, and his experience saw his team through to a competitive total.
Tasmania's start wasn't plesant. Jason Gillespie dismissed Michael Dighton with his first ball of the game and, shortly after, Michael di Ventuo became the first of Shaun Tait's three victims (2 for 30). Wickets fell regularly until Luke Butterworth and George Bailey came together with Tasmania tottering at 6 for 100. They gave hope and despair in equal measures as they put on 71 runs, but once Lehmann broke through with his handy spin, Tasmania's were all but out for the count. Tait picked up two wickets after Butterworth (44) was run out by Ryan Harris, who dismissed Michael Bevan and Daniel Marsh.