Queensland v South Australia, Pura Cup, Brisbane, 2nd day February 10, 2007

Maher stars as Queensland close in

Cricinfo staff

Queensland 4 for 325 (Maher 169, Broad 95) trail South Australia 377 (Cosgrove 109, Deitz 98, D Harris 59, Noffke 6-87) by 52 runs

Jimmy Maher scored his first century for 2006-07 © Getty Images

Jimmy Maher emphatically bounced back from his form slump and Ryan Broad made his first substantial Pura Cup contribution as Queensland closed in on first-innings points at Brisbane. The Bulls, who reached 4 for 325, could have already taken the lead had they not let South Australia's last pair, Shane Deitz and Shaun Tait, build a frustrating 89-run partnership in the morning session.

In reply to the visitors' 377, Maher and Broad put Queensland in command with a 263-run opening stand before the Redbacks claimed 3 for 13 to halt the home team's momentum. Maher's 169 was easily his best score this season - his previous highest was 52 - and he cracked 25 boundaries before Jason Gillespie finally broke the partnership and trapped him lbw.

Broad, playing only his fifth first-class match, passed fifty for the first time but fell agonisingly short of a maiden century when Gillespie had him caught behind for 95. Greg Moller, the Queensland debutant, fell victim to Tait's pace for 0 and at the close Clinton Perren (26 not out) and Chris Hartley (6 not out) were in charge of overhauling the Redbacks' total.

The Bulls wanted to wrap up South Australia's innings early but Tait and Deitz added 54 to their overnight score. Their stand was the Redbacks' finest tenth-wicket partnership - the previous was a measly 32 by Tim May and Chris Owen in 1991-92 - and ended when Ashley Noffke removed Deitz for 98. Noffke was the star in a mixed Queensland bowling effort, finishing with 6 for 87.