NSW v WA, Sheffield Shield, Canberra, 2nd day March 12, 2014

NSW on top despite Agar's five

ESPNcricinfo staff

Western Australia 82 and 5 for 138 (North 44) lead New South Wales 186 (Smith 48, Agar 5-74) by 34 runs

Ashton Agar picked up five wickets to lead a Western Australia fightback but they followed that with a batting collapse that ensured New South Wales remained well on top after two days in Canberra. The two teams entered this final round equal on points at the top of the Sheffield Shield table, along with South Australia, and after two days it was the Blues who seemed to have the best chance of hosting the decider.

While Tasmania were building an enormous lead over South Australia in Hobart, New South Wales were doing their best to set themselves on the victory path against the Warriors, having skittled them for 82 on day one. Agar's five wickets meant the Blues managed only a 104-run first-innings lead and after Western Australia reached 1 for 101 in their second innings, it seemed like the match could have returned to an equal footing.

But Doug Bollinger and Sean Abbott picked up two wickets each to leave the Warriors wobbling at 5 for 138 at stumps, with Shaun Marsh on 9 and Sam Whiteman on 20. They held a slender lead of 34 runs and needed to extend that significantly on the third day, but the low scores all round in the match did not augur well for Western Australia.

New South Wales began the second day at 4 for 127 and lost their final six wickets for 59 runs. Agar finished with 5 for 74, including the key wicket of Kurtis Patterson for 44, and he ended the innings with the last two wickets in one over.

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  • Dummy4 on March 13, 2014, 7:00 GMT

    Like others I hope this is the start of the second coming for Agar, he has oh so much potential. Not that I want him back in the test side any time soon but he could be a very good man to have in the team in the subcontinent.

    Shaun Marsh scores another century, oh my, Invers will be excited.

  • Peter on March 12, 2014, 20:32 GMT

    Promising signs from Agar, also think another season or 2 is needed for his development. Smith continues to impress, if this guy isn't a future Australian Captain I don't know who will be. Also good effort from Patterson, he needed this type of innings for his learning curve. Looking good foe a Shield final, the, Blues!

  • Dummy4 on March 12, 2014, 15:02 GMT

    Kurtis Patterson looks the only one along with Travis Head of the previous U19 set who is set to translate the promised potential ! I really hope these 2 kids along with Jake Doran can make loads of Shield runs soon

  • Eddie on March 12, 2014, 14:00 GMT

    Agar better not get in the UAE squad for one five for. He has had a terrible season. Average of 50, first class average of 42. O'Keefe is miles better

  • James on March 12, 2014, 12:10 GMT

    Good to see Agar getting a 5fer. He has had a tough time of it since being dropped from the test side. Dropped from scorchers, banned for a game in the shield, can't get wickets, not many runs. So hopefully this is a turning point.

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