Victoria fight back after Cowan ton
Victoria 233 and 2 for 78 (Carters 41*) lead Tasmania 266 (Cowan 101, Siddle 4-66, Wright 3-73) by 45 runs
Ed Cowan made his first hundred of the Sheffield Shield season and delivered first-innings points to Tasmania, but Victoria fought back to ensure the match remained in the balance after two days. Cowan was the stand-out in an otherwise middling Tasmania batting line-up and the Tigers finished with a lead of only 33 runs as Peter Siddle and Damien Wright ran through the lower order.
By the close of play, Victoria were 2 for 78 in their second innings, giving them a 45-run advantage, with Ryan Carters on 41. Michael Hill was lbw to Adam Maher for 30 and the nightwatchman Jon Holland fell for a duck, also to Maher, from the final ball of the day's play.
Victoria's fightback in the field was impressive given they spent most of the day without their captain Andrew McDonald, who bowled the first over of the morning and then went off with a calf injury. Cowan and the Tasmania captain George Bailey kept things steady until Bailey was caught down leg side off James Pattinson for 26, and then Mark Cosgrove and Travis Birt fell in the 20s.
Cowan and James Faulkner saw the Tigers past Victoria's 233 but Cowan, who reached his hundred just before tea, fell shortly after the break for 101 when he edged Siddle to Rob Quiney in the slips. It sparked a collapse of 4 for 19 that kept Victoria firmly in the contest, although McDonald's injury will hamper their chances of victory.