Recovering Queensland consider options for final
Queensland have followed up their awful result against Victoria in the last preliminary game of the season by naming a 15-man squad for Friday's final at the Junction Oval. The Bulls were taken for 806 in the Bushrangers' only innings and have called on the legspinner Daniel Doran, Scott Walter, a left-arm fast bowler, and opener Nick Kruger to provide them with extra options.
Chris Swan delivered only eight overs in the match at the MCG due to a groin injury while Lee Carseldine, who has a back problem, will also be given until Thursday to prove his fitness. It is not the ideal build-up for Queensland, who limped into second to qualify for their 11th final in 14 years.
While the Bulls have a lot of fresh faces in the extended squad, Martin Love, who is retiring after the match, said Andrew Symonds and Shane Watson would have a big say in the result. "It does come down to those guys," Love told AAP. "We've got [Symonds] and Shane Watson with the bat - they are the guys who can turn a game in a session. We probably have more of those [match-winners] than they do."
The Bulls beat Victoria in the FR Cup decider last month and Love has faith in the team to hit back at the most important time. "We've got a good record in finals and Victorians don't," Love said. "We will certainly let them know about their record under pressure and hopefully that will make a difference for us."
Doran has played four matches this season, picking up three wickets at 69.66, while Walter, who is 19, did not gain a breakthrough in his debut. The Bulls are searching for other avenues after Ben Laughlin returned 2 for 223 from 55 overs at the MCG and Nathan Rimmington had 0 for 183 off 44.
Chris Simpson, the captain, was the most successful in Victoria's first innings with 4 for 194 on a strip made for batsmen. However, the Junction Oval pitch is also unlikely to help the bowlers much and Victoria must only draw the game to take the trophy.
Queensland squad Ryan Broad, Nick Kruger, Martin Love, Shane Watson, Andrew Symonds, Lee Carseldine, James Hopes, Chris Hartley (wk), Chris Simpson (capt), Daniel Doran, Chris Swan, Ben Cutting, Nathan Rimmington, Scott Walter, Ben Laughlin.