Tasmania v New South Wales, FR Cup, Launceston December 5, 2009

Bailey holds nerve to guide Tasmania home

Cricinfo staff

Tasmania 7 for 178 (Bailey 74*, Smith 3-43) beat New South Wales 177 (Henriques 37, Denton 3-19) by 3 wickets

The captain George Bailey controlled Tasmania's tricky chase with an unbeaten 74 that sealed a tight win over New South Wales. A testing pitch in Launceston made life hard for the batsmen and it was Bailey's innings that stood out as his side reached 7 for 178 in a three-wicket win.

Chasing the Blues' 177, Tasmania were looking comfortable at 3 for 87 following a stand of 51 between Brett Geeves (36), the makeshift opener, and Bailey. However, Steven Smith created some awkward moments with 3 for 43 before Bailey, who hit three sixes and four fours during his 89-ball stay, and Brendan Drew (31) guided them home.

The Blues, who have lost three of their four games in the competition, relied on some late hitting from Stuart Clark and Simon Keen to reach their total on a pitch offering some unpredictable bounce. Gerard Denton caused the early damage with the prized wickets of Phillip Hughes (0) and Phil Jaques (0) in the first over before following up with David Warner (8) in a match he was not meant to play in. The late withdrawal of the opener Wade Irvine, who hurt his back in the warm-up, allowed Denton to take his place and he finished with 3 for 19.

Moises Henriques started the recovery from 3 for 14 with a team-high 37 while Ben Rohrer's 28 and Smith's 25 avoided an embarrassing total. Clark and Keen both scrambled 29 to hold up the hosts while Geeves and Luke Butterworth collected two wickets each to keep the pressure on.