Sport Cricket Redbacks can win Sheffield Shield: Ferguson

Redbacks can win Sheffield Shield: Ferguson

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South Australia batsman Callum Ferguson declared the Redbacks had finally developed some backbone after surging to the top of the Sheffield Shield ladder.

The Redbacks overcame an early scare as Ferguson steered the visitors to a six-wicket victory over New South Wales at the SCG, hitting a composed, unbeaten 45 to reach 4-100 before lunch on day four.

Chasing a meagre victory target of 96, the Redbacks slumped to be 3-6 following sharp spells from Sean Abbott (3-42) and Trent Copeland (1-13).

It was the sort of situation in which previous Redbacks sides would have folded, Ferguson argues.

But after being in a position to win all three domestic competitions last year, and failing to make a single final, Ferguson believes a hardened attitude has changed their fortunes and made them a Shield-winning proposition.

“I 100 per cent believe that,” Ferguson said.

“…We came up against a very good side here over the last four days and there were moments when they got on top of us.

“But what I saw was something that probably previous Redbacks sides didn’t have – and that was the backbone to turn the game on its head when it looked doom and gloom.”

And Queensland have claimed a much-needed outright win, downing Victoria by 181 runs at the Gabba.

Set an improbable victory target of 325 off 79 overs, Victoria were bowled out for 143 in 51 overs early in the final session with Luke Feldman taking 4-36.

The Bulls were last on the shield ladder ahead of the match but now move to fourth, relegating the Bushrangers to the bottom in the final round before the break for the Big Bash League.

Victoria stumbled in their run chase from the outset when Alister McDermott (2-29) removed openers Aaron Finch (18) and Peter Handscomb (seven) to reduce the visitors to 2-36.

But the middle session was a nightmare for the Bushrangers, ensuring they limped into tea at 7-132.

Victoria lost 5-87 before tea with Ben Cutting (2-15) at one stage claiming two wickets in four balls before Feldman cleaned up the tail.