Tasmania v South Australia, Pura Cup, Hobart, 4th day November 1, 2007

Ponting hundred drives Tasmania to victory

Cricinfo staff

Tasmania 6 for 363 and 4 for 349 (Ponting 126, Dighton 77) beat South Australia 482 and 7 for 229 (Cosgrove 76, Lehmann 47, Delmont 56) by six wickets

Ricky Ponting continued to enjoy his return to the Pura Cup, striking a century to drive Tasmania to a six-wicket victory against South Australia on the final day at Bellerive Oval. The home side chased down 349 inside 70 overs, with 4.1 overs to spare for the day after South Australia declared just before lunch on 7 for 229.

Ponting was helped in his efforts - his purple patch continued following his first-innings 96 - by Michael Dighton, who made 77, and George Bailey's unbeaten 69. Ponting finally fell in sight of the win, for 126, bowled by Darren Lehmann.

South Australia's pace pairing of Shaun Tait and Jason Gillespie remained wicketless, while no other bowler grabbed more than one wicket.

Michael di Venuto was put down by Matthew Elliott at slip, but he fell finally on 33 to Nathan Adcock's tidy slip catch off Mark Cosgrove, the first wicket for the visitors. By this stage Tasmania had a great platform, with 83 on the dial. Enter Ponting, who continued imperiously to help both his state and the mindest of his country leading up to the first Test next week.

Dan Cullen struck next, bowling Dighton, but the momentum was firmly with the hosts and so it continued, as Ponting then combined with Travis Birt (28) and Bailey. His dismissal brought in Daniel Marsh to finish off the job.

The Redbacks added 51 in the morning session, with Cosgrove moving to 76, while debutant Andy Delmont reached his maiden first-class fifty, after the top order had once again proved brittle on the third day.

With a win and a draw, Tasmania are now in third place, while South Australia's two defeats in two leave them at the bottom.