Mark Cosgrove steers Redbacks home
South Australia 6 for 160 (Cosgrove 43*, Harris 34) beat Queesnland 4 for 156 (Hopes 63, Symonds 27*) by four wickets
South Australia rocketed to the top of the Twenty20 Big Bash table with a comfortable victory against Queensland at the Adelaide Oval. In front of a capacity 17,500, the Redbacks controlled their chase well, courtesy of a composed unbeaten 43 from Mark Cosgrove, along with valuable contributions from Daniel Harris and Shahid Afridi (27), to chase down the Bulls' total of 156.
The game was set up by South Australia's bowlers earlier in the day, after Queensland captain Chris Simpson chose to bat. The Redbacks bowled well as a unit to restrict the Bulls, who struggled to find the rope on a two-paced surface. James Hopes played well at the top of the order, compiling 63 from 45 balls, but he lacked support.
The Bulls particularly struggled to get hold of Afridi, with his four overs costing only 25, including Hopes' scalp. The Pakistan allrounder's performance led to his second consecutive Man-of-the-Match award, and he looks to have lived up to his marquee billing in the tournament.
The Redbacks' chase started poorly with Graham Manou caught behind off Nathan Rimmington in the second over. Harris and Tom Cooper exploded to score 42 from the next 24 balls, before they fell in consecutive overs. Afridi's whirlwind innings swung the ledger back in South Australia's favour before Cosgrove, despite a couple of hiccups from Kieron Pollard and Cameron Borgas, was able to steer the side home.
Queensland were left to rue two dropped catches, and an below-par batting display. They now must win their next three matches to have any hope of playing in the finals.