New South Wales v Tasmania, Ryobi Cup, Sydney October 22, 2010

Cowan and Birt deliver big win for Tasmania

ESPNcricinfo staff

Tasmania 7 for 286 (Cowan 131*, Birt 87) beat New South Wales 214 (Jaques 95, Haddin 56, Doherty 3-35, Krejza 3-55) by 72 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Ed Cowan and Travis Birt continued Tasmania's undefeated run in the Ryobi Cup by setting up a 72-run victory over New South Wales, who were on top at the halfway mark. In the second block, Cowan and Birt combined for a 172-run partnership that drove the Tigers to 286 for 7, before the spin of Jason Krejza and Xavier Doherty sank the Blues.

New South Wales remained in the contest while Phil Jaques was at the crease but when he was trapped lbw by Doherty for 95, it sparked a collapse. The Blues lost their last seven wickets for 30 as Krejza spun the ball sharply and varied his pace to finish with 3 for 55, while Doherty was equally impressive with 3 for 35.

It was a surprising turnaround after Jaques and Brad Haddin (56) earned a point for the Blues by taking them to 1 for 91 after the first block, well ahead of Tasmania's 3 for 76. But the partnership between Cowan and Birt changed everything; Cowan anchored the innings with sensible strokeplay while Birt provided the muscle.

Birt's 87 from 62 balls featured five sixes and it took a classic Brett Lee yorker to halt his push for a hundred. Cowan was not prevented from reaching the mark, although he survived a strange incident on 74 when he was given caught behind off Stuart Clark and reprieved when Haddin said he was unsure if the ball had carried.

Replays showed the catch was clean but the umpires are not permitted to refer such takes to the TV official, and it allowed Cowan to compile his highest one-day score. He finished unbeaten on 131 and saw the ball so well that in the final over he reverse-paddled a fullish Lee delivery to third man for a boundary.

Tasmania, the defending champions, sit on top of the table with three wins from three games, proving themselves equally adept at the new split-innings format. New South Wales have won just one of their three matches.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • David on October 23, 2010, 16:23 GMT

    Another point is - what is the point of a split innings other than to disturb the rhythm of a batsmen who has played into the conditions of the game. They should have two proper innings where the batsmen get a second chance. Bring on the double innings 20twenty game!

  • David on October 23, 2010, 16:20 GMT

    I was at the game and it was a disgrace that Haddin did not have the confidence to say that he took the catch. This was an error in judgement that lost NSW the game that they would have otherwise won with ease. Poor call by the umpire, then followed up by Haddin....

  • Terry on October 23, 2010, 7:11 GMT

    This match deminstrates the excitement of split-innings cricket as it means that a team that is down isnt out. This allows a team time to regroup after a bad "quarter" like happens in most other sports. Tas were struggling in the first session, also in the second, but hit back well in the 3rd session and pegged NSW back in the 4th session to win the match. A magnificant turn around, a magnificant format.

  • Jack on October 23, 2010, 5:06 GMT

    Yeah i agree with boris6491 and BlueyCollar

  • Dummy4 on October 22, 2010, 22:54 GMT

    krezja still should control the runs more

  • Mick on October 22, 2010, 22:03 GMT

    Tassie look they are going to be hard to beat for 1 day cup. Add Paine to the batting line up who will probably be replaced by Haddin in the Aussie side and their batting looks really strong. Looking forward to Faulkners development and Doherty is without doubt the most consistent quality slow bowler in the country in this format. There is only 1 thing that can stop them. BRAD HODGE. Also in a couple of years could we see almost half the Australian side being a product of the Tassie cricket system Hilfenhaus, Paine, Cowan, Watson and Bailey.

  • Amahl on October 22, 2010, 12:13 GMT

    Probably the first enthralling split innings game this season where the split did serve to the turn the tide. Brett bowled well in the first 20 overs which is positive. Equally positive, from Australia's perspective, are the performances of both Doherty and Krejza. Doherty has been consistent enough to deserve a spot in the Australian team whilst Krejza earned his spot and has lost it only due to injury to an inferior bowler. Hopefully, they keep performing and turn a few of the selectors' heads.

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