Queensland 229 (Law 75) beat New South Wales 204 (Jaques 61) by 25 runs
New South Wales, the defending one-day champions, have only a mathematical chance of playing in the limited-overs final after Queensland pulled off a remarkable 25-run win at the Gabba. Defending a modest total of 229, the Queensland bowlers bowled NSW out for 204 in the 48th over. The loss left NSW with 14 points, nine behind second placed Victoria. Queensland lead the table with 22 points, with two matches to play.
It was a stunning Queensland fightback after NSW got away to a flying start thanks to the clean-hitting of opener Phil Jaques (61 off 67). But from 1 for 89 in the 17th over, they lost a steady stream of wickets as the bowlers, led by Michael Kasprowicz (3 for 38) and James Hopes (3 for 34), tightened the screws.
The pivotal moment came when Ashley Noffke produced a brilliant run-out off his own bowling to dismiss Mark Waugh (20 off 28) when the score was 5 for 158 in the 38th over. Mark had steadied the ship after brother Steve (16) had been caught behind off James Hopes. Hopes fittingly produced the final act by bowling Doug Bollinger with the first ball of the 48th over.
That the match could be played out over almost the full 100 overs was testament to the efforts of the ground staff after a frightening electrical storm lashed the Gabba midway through Queensland's innings, the highlight of which was an 83-ball 75 by Stuart Law. At 2 for 130, Queensland were on track to register an imposing score before the storm caused a 76-minute delay.
Once play resumed, after the massive puddles drained away, NSW duo Stuart MacGill (2 for 28) and Stuart Clark (3 for 43) sparked off a collapse. Queensland lost their last eight wickets for 99 runs, including four wickets for only 12 runs a five-overs spell. It was triggered by Craig Philipson's run out when his bat jammed in the wet grass when sliding for a quick single.
Clark and MacGill built pressure from both ends and it was only the fine rearguard efforts of Nathan Hauritz (26 off 29) which got Queensland past 200. Law provided the initial fireworks by belting eight fours and a straight six to continue his rich vein of one-day form.