Victoria v Queensland, Sheffield Shield final, Melbourne, 5th day

Unbeaten Victoria grab the Sheffield Shield

Peter English

March 17, 2009

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Queensland 200 and 1 for 221 (Broad 109, Love 104*) drew with Victoria 510 and 5 for 282 dec (Hodge 90, Jewell 75, White 61)
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details


Brad Hodge led Victoria's second innings by breezing to 90 in the opening session, but the hosts had to wait to start their party © Getty Images
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Victoria's season of dominance was confirmed as the one-sided final ended in a draw and the home players celebrated their first Sheffield Shield triumph since 2003-04. Cameron White's outfit was outstanding throughout the summer and was so successful they did not even give up a first-innings deficit.

The win, which was on track since the second day was rained out at the Junction Oval, ended their sequence of Twenty20 and one-day final losses over the past two months. When time was called at 5.27pm the players started the partying for the state's 27th Shield success.

After the Bushrangers declared at lunch with a lead of 592, Queensland delayed their opponents' march towards victory with Ryan Broad and Martin Love opening with a 199-run partnership. Love went on to his 31st Sheffield Shield century, driving David Hussey through cover for four shortly before Queensland finished with 1 for 221.

Both Broad and Love batted with the freedom of men in their last day of work for the summer and, in Love's case, his career. He retired at stumps after 16 years with Queensland and stepped down as one of only seven players to own more than 10,000 Shield runs.

Love left a lasting reminder of his effortless talent by producing some sweet drives, clips and cuts, with his bat seeming in slow motion until the ball hit it and accelerated through the field. Love eased 19 boundaries in his unbeaten 104, which took his overall tally to 10,132.

Broad was more aggressive, picking up 109 from 132 balls, and ended his season on a high with his fifth first-class hundred. His haul contained three fours from a Dirk Nannes over and he also launched fours sixes. One of the clearances off White exited the ground at long-off and another, a slash over cover off the spinner, brought up his century. He almost stayed to the end, but edged Shane Harwood behind while wanting to add another boundary.

The performance prevented Queensland from falling to a heavy defeat, which was a small consolation after their poor week. They were dismissed for 200 on Monday in reply to Victoria's 510 and were then batted even further out of the match.

Brad Hodge, Nick Jewell and White slammed half-centuries as Victoria gorged in the opening session of the final day. Starting with a 392-run advantage, the hosts watched Hodge race to 90 and White blast to 61, including four fours and three sixes, after Jewell skipped to 75. There was not much Queensland could do to stop the fireworks, although holding a couple of catches would have helped, and 200 runs were scored in the 38 overs.

Daniel Doran's legspin was the main focus of the attack and Hodge and White, who scored 135 in the first innings, took him for 54 in 30 deliveries. One over went for 18, with both batsmen clearing the rope at midwicket, and he gave up another 13 before getting a rest.

The captain Chris Simpson was also targeted, but he could have had Hodge and White if his outfielders had been more switched on. He did pick up Jewell and David Hussey (4) in his 2 for 49 after they were both bowled cutting on to their stumps.

Hodge went within sight of a century, pulling Ben Laughlin to Lee Carseldine at deep square leg, and Laughlin earned a second when White holed out to long-on. Nine balls later Victoria ended the punishment by closing the innings, and by the end of the day they were toasting a sensational summer.

Peter English is the Australasia editor of Cricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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