Cowan, Wells push Tasmania into final
Tasmania 3 for 283 (Cowan 125, Wells 121*) beat Queensland 8 for 282 (Lynn 98, Reardon 67) by 7 wickets
Ed Cowan and Jonathan Wells both scored centuries to secure Tasmania a place in the Ryobi Cup final with their win over Queensland in Hobart. The Tigers made light work of the highest chase in domestic one-day history at Bellerive Oval as they reached 3 for 283 in the 48th over, although they needed only 226 to make the decider against South Australia.
That was the mark that would have prevented Queensland from winning with a bonus point, the only scenario that could have denied the Tigers a place in a third consecutive one-day final. As it was, Cowan and Wells steered Tasmania comfortably past that milestone as they compiled a 223-run stand, a fine achievement given the pressure of the game and the fact that they came together at 1 for 5.
Cowan made 125 from 107 deliveries, his third one-day century, but he lost the chance to be there at the conclusion when he was run out in the 38th over. Wells had a couple of lives - the Queensland wicketkeeper Ben Dunk dropped him and missed a stumping off the bowling of Cameron Boyce - before he brought up his first century for Tasmania.
In the 10 one-day games he had played for Tasmania until this match, Wells had a highest score of 20. But he caused problems for the Bulls and struck the winning run with a cut behind point off Boyce to finish unbeaten on 121 from 145 balls. The win means Tasmania will not only play in the final but have the chance to host it if the Redbacks lose their last game to Victoria.
The Bulls gave themselves a chance of success with their strong batting performance, led by Chris Lynn and Nathan Reardon. Lynn made 98 and was denied his first one-day hundred when he was run out by the Tasmania captain George Bailey, who threw with his non-preferred left hand from inside the circle to have the bails whipped off by the wicketkeeper Brady Jones.
Reardon was also run out, for 67, but some late striking from the debutant Matthew Gale allowed the Bulls to get up to 8 for 252 from their 50 overs. Joe Burns had scored 48 at the top of the order, but their efforts weren't enough to propel Queensland into the final.