Western Australia v New South Wales, Pura Cup, Perth, 3rd day October 16, 2007

Jaques wins opening battle before Bollinger hat-trick

Cricinfo staff

Western Australia 99 and 7 for 139 (Pomersbach 54*, Bollinger 4-23) need 330 runs to beat New South Wales 267 and 3 for 300 dec (Jaques 167, Forrest 64, Cowan 56)

Hats off: Phil Jaques deserved to be satisfied after his 167 at the WACA © Getty Images

After a false start in the first innings, Phil Jaques ignited his campaign to replace Justin Langer in the Test team with 167 on a day when New South Wales overwhelmed their hosts. Western Australia's under-strength bowlers were unable to contain Jaques and the Warriors' miserable match continued when Doug Bollinger's hat-trick had them heading to defeat. At stumps they were 7 for 139 chasing an impossible 469.

While Jaques had a stronger Australia A tour of Pakistan than the Warriors' Chris Rogers, the real battle for the opening spot at the Gabba on November 8 centres around the early-season performances in the Pura Cup. Both specialists failed in the first innings, but Jaques quickly moved on from his 13 to underline his case for inclusion and strengthen New South Wales' position. Jaques, who has played two Tests and six ODIs, began on 71 and moved cautiously towards his century, which took 171 balls and came with a straight boundary off Brett Dorey.

Once Jaques posted three figures he lifted his scoring rate and dominated an attack missing Ben Edmondson, who strained his right hamstring on day two, and David Bandy. "I wanted to get some runs over here, and I suppose I was a little bit scratchy at the start, just to get going and until the nerves settled a bit, and then I started to flow a bit better," Jaques told AAP. "Today I felt really good, I felt quite fluent and it was a different me today."

He brought up his 150 shortly before lunch and holed out to deep midwicket looking for a 26th boundary from his 250th delivery. Shortly after Peter Forrest fell to Aaron Heal for 64 New South Wales declared at 3 for 300.

Bollinger struck in the third over when he removed Langer for 1, but his highlight came when he picked up Shaun Marsh, Bandy and Luke Ronchi in consecutive deliveries, leaving Western Australia at 6 for 78. Marsh was lbw, Bandy was caught at gully by Matthew Nicholson and Ronchi fell to a stunning diving catch from the wicketkeeper Daniel Smith. It would have been four from four for Bollinger if Dominic Thornely had taken Heal's edge at second slip. Luke Pomersbach stood out with an unbeaten 54 while Bollinger captured 4 for 23.

Grant Lambert was also on a hat-trick after ruining Rogers' hopes of a long stay and following up with the dismissal of Adam Voges. Rogers added 17 to his first-innings 9 on a day that belonged to Jaques, Bollinger and New South Wales.