Bollinger, Copeland fire but Tasmania take two points
New South Wales 97 (Jaques 28, Faulkner 5-33, Butterworth 4-26) & 0 for 18 trail Tasmania 125 (Butterworth 39, Copeland 6-51) by 10 runs
Doug Bollinger provided some good news for Australia with three wickets on his comeback but it couldn't stop Tasmania taking two first-innings points in a tense tussle at the SCG. New South Wales won the toss and were out for 97 before tea, but Bollinger (3 for 25) and Trent Copeland (6 for 51) ensured they were not out of the game as the Tigers were dismissed for 125.
On a day when the country's best batsmen struggled for runs at every ground, Ricky Ponting managed 7 on the seaming surface, Shane Watson 6, Simon Katich 1 and Brad Haddin 10. It was Katich's first senior outing since leaving the India tour last month with a broken thumb and he lasted 23 balls, edging Luke Butterworth to third slip. Katich hurt his shoulder while fielding late in the day and left the ground, but the injury is not expected to be serious enough to keep him out of the first Test.
Watson was caught behind off his gloves attempting a leave but got a second chance later in the day. He finished unbeaten on 13 while Katich chose not to risk himself after hurting his shoulder, sending in Moises Henriques instead, as the Blues ended up at 0 for 18.
When Ponting got his turn he followed a Copeland outswinger and was caught behind, one of 12 wickets to fall between lunch and tea. The conditions limited the spin bowl-off between Nathan Hauritz and Xavier Doherty to four overs from Doherty.
The stars for Tasmania were James Faulkner, who recorded a personal-best 5 for 33, and Butterworth, who gained 4 for 26 after taking the new ball. However, any hopes of a big first-innings lead were quickly dented by Bollinger and Copeland.
Bollinger, playing his first game since hurting his stomach in India, removed Alex Doolan lbw in his first over and returned after tea to pick up Mark Cosgrove, leaving the visitors at 5 for 41. In between those breakthroughs Copeland gained two victims and Watson found George Bailey's edge, which was taken by a leaping Haddin.
Copeland has an amazing record of 51 wickets in his first eight Shield games and whenever the ball swings he is a major threat. Bollinger also enjoyed the conditions during his 11 overs.
Butterworth guided Tasmania into the lead with two wickets remaining and their advantage extended to 28. Butterworth finished with 39, the highest score of an amazing day, and Doherty was unbeaten on 20.