Queensland v Western Australia, Pura Cup, Brisbane, 2nd day January 29, 2007

Queensland look to Watson for safety

Cricinfo staff

Queensland 139 and 3 for 88 trail Western Australia 317 (Rogers 55, Heal 54) by 90 runs

Shane Watson, who returned for Queensland on Thursday, showed some encouraging signs with bat and ball at the Gabba © Getty Images

Shane Watson completed an encouraging day in his push to return to international duty at the World Cup, but Queensland will need more from him after another disappointing effort against Western Australia. Watson, who is appearing in a first-class game for the first time since a long-running hamstring injury, gained figures of 3 for 60 in 12 overs, including the wickets of Aaron Heal and Luke Pomersbach, as Western Australia were dismissed for 317.

Queensland started their reply 178 runs behind and lost three wickets before Watson stabilised the situation with an unbeaten 23. He will resume with Craig Philipson, who is 12, on day three as the Bulls try to avoid their third outright defeat in a row at the Gabba.

Ashley Noffke was the best of the Queensland bowlers with 3 for 76, but the home side was frustrated by the nightwatchman Heal, who reached 54, while Pomersbach (46) and the tail-enders also caused problems. Noffke struck twice with the second new ball to take care of Luke Ronchi and David Bandy, and James Hopes picked up two wickets. The gains were lost when Jimmy Maher, Lachlan Stevens and Clint Perren departed before stumps.