Cricket Australia Items/news/2013/2/24/langer-rapt-with-warriors-fightback

Langer rapt with Warriors fightback

UPDATED 25 February, 2013 2:09PM AEST | by Ben Cameron

Western Australian coach Justin Langer says he is thrilled with the way his team has fought itself into a winning position in their Shield Game against Tasmania at the WACA.

At stumps on day three the game was left teetering in a farcical position with Western Australia needing six runs for outright victory and Tasmania two wickets. 

As per Sheffield Shield rules the umpires extended the day half-an-hour or eight overs beyond the scheduled close of play, but a result could not be achieved in that time, which meant the teams will have to return on Sunday.

Western Australia were set a total 357 for victory after Tasmania were bowled out for 242 in their second innings off the second ball of the third day. 

The Warriors had made a disastrous start to their chase when they lost 3-12 with the wickets of Marcus Harris (seven), Liam Davis (15), and Luke Towers (five). 

When former Tasmanian rookie John Rodgers fell for 39 they were 5-137 and Langer said to see a young middle and lower-order fight their way back into the contest was pleasing. 

"I'm thrilled about the way the boys have fought back again," he said. 

"I think even if we lost by 50 or 100 runs I was still going to be pleased with the way the boys have fought. 

"Mitchell Marsh and Sam Whiteman and Ashton Agar, they are only 20-year-old kids or 21-year-old kids, so I've been really thrilled with the way they've fought back." 

Western Australia were bowled out for 97 in the first innings, which handed Tasmania a 114-run first innings which looked to have set up the match for the apple islanders. 

Langer said first-innings performances remained a concern for his young team. 

"It's one of the things we have to really look at going forward," he said. 

"Not just here at the WACA, but also we got bowled out for 69 at Hobart, we got bowled out for 110 last week at the Gabba, so they're areas we have to get better at. 

"Having said that, to fight back to a position to a chance of winning this game in the morning and to fight back to win the game in Queensland last week with some young guys it's a great tribute to their character and where we're heading." 

Langer said he would have preferred to see the game end on Saturday night, but understands it is a black and white rule. 

"The fact is that's the rules of the game and I thought the umpires showed good common sense to allow those eight overs to happen," he said. 

"I could jump up and down and say of course we'd like to have a day off tomorrow, and get a result tonight, but that's the rules and we've got to abide by them."

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia

First Posted 24 February, 2013 11:01AM AEST

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