Bollinger and Bracken rattle rusty Redbacks
New South Wales 2 for 35 (Forrest 3*, Casson 0*) trail South Australia 178 (Ferguson 83, Bollinger 4-50, Bracken 4-63) by 143 runs
On a day of electric pace bowling, Doug Bollinger and Nathan Bracken both grabbed four wickets to rub out South Australia's batsmen for 178. Collapses are an increasingly familiar scenario for the home side who, aside from Callum Ferguson's 83, were largely helpless as New South Wales cruised the first day in Adelaide.
Speaking of sadly familiar, Cameron Borgas' return, on the back of three ducks, was noteworthy only for another nought, and two dropped catches which had threatened to leave his side wicketless by stumps. Eventually they picked up two as the Blues finished on 2 for 35.
The Redbacks weren't helped either by the late withdrawal of their solid batting pair Darren Lehmann and Mark Cosgrove to injuries; nevertheless Nathan Adcock confidently chose to bat on a pitch which offered plenty of pace and bounce.
He was soon to regret his decision as they slipped to 8 for 120, although they recovered to 178 as Ferguson celebrated his return with a composed innings which, along with a doughty ninth-wicket stand of 51 with Jason Gillespie, pushed the Redbacks' otherwise-dire first innings into a third session.
The Redbacks struggled from the off, as the surprise opening pair of Bollinger and Matthew Nicholson, bowling well on return, beat them for pace on several occasions. But it was the ever-eager Bracken who broke through. Having been held back until the eighth over, it was enough to propel him into striking immediately, deciding Matthew Elliott (6) had outstayed his brief-but-entertaining welcome.
Bollinger then moved in to remove a prodding Shane Deitz and trap a sorry Borgas lbw, before Nicholson nipped in to pick off Adcock (4). Bollinger upped his tally to four - another lbw in Andy Delmont (16) and Graham Manou edging for 4 - as the pace guns just kept firing with pinpoint accuracy.
The genuine pace display was a thrilling sight, although the scattered home fans may not have agreed - more than a few voted with their feet. Undeterred, Bracken went on to four by cleaning up Mark Cleary, Harris and Dan Cullen, all for single figures.
In between, Ferguson was excellent, particularly on the off-side where he offered a series of crisp drives to shore up the batting, making the most of his first senior opportunity this season. He eventually fell to the slow left-arm offerings of Beau Casson.
But this was a day for the pace bowlers and Ryan Harris and Gillespie certainly enjoyed the conditions later on, but they needed to be backed up in the field. Alas, Borgas twice squandered the chance to go from zero to temporary hero by dropping Grant Lambert on 1 off Harris, then spilling Ed Cowan on a duck off Gillespie, both at third slip.
Finally Mark Cleary struck in the 15th over, his first, with Lambert caught behind for 8. Shaun Tait would have enjoyed himself too - assuming he was injury-free and not in the Test XI - but his elbow remained sore, as did the rest of South Australia's wounds.
They took some consolation in Dan Cullen's late bamboozling of Cowan for 14 - the only other wicket to fall to spin - but they will begin day two with a guaranteed hangover from Friday evening and fast needing a cure.
Jenny Thompson is an assistant editor at Cricinfo