Jewell, Hodge shine for Victoria
Victoria 2 for 352 (Jewell 164, Hodge 100*, Rofe 2-67) vs South Australia
Centuries from Nick Jewell and Brad Hodge put Victoria in a powerful position on the first day of their match against South Australia in Adelaide. They put on 190 runs for the second wicket as Victoria went to stumps at 2 for 352 with Hodge unbeaten on 100 and David Hussey on 8. It proved to be a luckless day for the home side, which had gone into the game looking to overturn the one-day loss to Victoria on Sunday.
Chris Rogers, playing his initial first-class match for Victoria having moved from Western Australia, combined with Jewell for a strong 139-run opening stand after the stand-in captain Hussey chose to bat. The pair began confidently on a lifeless pitch and Jewell in particular was harsh on the South Australia attack, which featured Shaun Tait in his first taste of first-class cricket in nine months.
Jewell, who likes to joke about having only a couple of shots in his repertoire, showed more aggressive instincts than usual and struck 28 fours in his 164. His most recent previous innings for Victoria was 99 in last season's Pura Cup final and this time he reached triple-figures with a quick single following a lofted drive over mid-on that took him to 99.
Rogers continued to justify Victoria's investment in him after he opened the season with 60 in Sunday's one-day game. He fell on 63 when he edged behind off Paul Rofe, having already survived a chance that was put down by Tom Plant at slip. The removal of Rogers was one of the few bright spots for South Australia, who then had to deal with Hodge.
He took 14 balls to get off the mark but was hardly troubled by any of the bowlers. He provided the perfect foil for Jewell as Victoria looked to be heading towards a mammoth first-innings score. The only other celebration for the Redbacks came when Rofe bowled Jewell in the 81st over with the score on 329.
Mark Cleary was unlucky not to have Hussey for a duck just before stumps after an edge flew between the wicketkeeper and first slip. Hodge brought up his century in the penultimate over of the day with a casual flick through midwicket on a day which clearly belonged to the visitors.