Qld v NSW, Pura Cup final, Brisbane, 2nd day March 19, 2005

Love leads Queensland fightback

Cricinfo staff

Queensland 102 & 4 for 150 (Love 61*, Philipson 7*) lead New South Wales 188 (Haddin 68*, Noffke 4-58) by 64 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Brad Haddin provided an impressive and crucial 68 at the Gabba © Getty Images

Martin Love led the Queensland fightback on the second day of the Pura Cup final at the Gabba, guiding them to a 64-run lead in a low-scoring contest. Love played himself back into form with a gritty 61, having struggled for runs during the season. Brad Haddin, the New South Wales captain, had guided the Blues from the awful position of 5 for 48 to an 86-run first-innings advantage with a fine 68.

Nathan Bracken, who took six wickets in the first innings, struck early in the Queensland second innings, capturing Jimmy Maher for 1, and Stuart MacGill, bowling his first over of the match, dismissed Clinton Perren to give New South Wales the upper hand. The wicket, MacGill's 53rd of the season, beat Bill O'Reilly's 65-year-old mark for New South Wales. Love and Shane Watson then added 80 for the third wicket before Watson edged Grant Lambert and when the big wicket of Andrew Symonds fell to Bracken the game was finely balanced.

Ashley Noffke re-floated Queensland with three early wickets as the Blues fell from 1 for 31 chasing a small 102. Struggling to maintain his place this year, Noffke was preferred to Mitchell Johnson and dismantled the strong top order with the wickets of Matthew Phelps, Phil Jaques and Dominic Thornely in the first hour. He finished with 4 for 58.

The run out of James Packman, who did not face a ball, had the Blues stuttering, but Lambert and Haddin enjoyed a stand of 46 that stabilised the innings. Haddin pushed his side ahead and continued adding vital blows in a match-high 60-run partnership with Stuart Clark (25) for the eighth wicket, giving the Blues a vital first-innings lead.