Tasmania have crushed South Australia’s hopes of a Matador BBQs One-Day Cup semi-final appearance with a 28-win at Hurstville Oval on Wednesday.
Needing a win to advance to Friday’s semi-final against NSW, the Redbacks challenge of scoring 296 was too great, all out for 267 in the 39th over.
Quick Single: NSW knock WA out of Matador
South Australia’s loss means Victoria will face the Blues on Friday at North Sydney Oval, with the winner to face Queensland two days later at the same venue.
"I think our bowlers did a fantastic job to keep them to 300 on a pretty small ground on a very good wicket," Head told cricket.com.au after play.
"We left ourselves a little short and lost wickets throughout.
"If we had a batter there at the end I think we win.
"A nice cameo from Richo got us a little bit close.
"Pretty disappointing because I think with the group that we’ve got we could have given this comp a pretty good shake."
List A debutant Cameron Stevenson was the man of the match for his 5-32 from 8.4 overs.
Alex Doolan’s 79, his fourth half-century of the tournament, was the backbone of Tasmania’s innings of 7-295 from 50 overs after South Australia won the toss and elected to bowl.
Tigers skipper Tim Paine chipped in with 44, while James Faulkner’s rapid 18-ball 38 set the Redbacks a mountainous pursuit.
Young star Cameron Valente finished off an excellent campaign as the Matador Cup leading wicket-taker, capturing 15 wickets at 16.73.
The right-hander also scored his maiden one-day hundred, and finished the match on 39 as the penultimate wicket.
"He just keeps doing a job," Head said of Valente. "In one-day cricket he's got a lot of tricks, different variations.
"He also did a great job with the bat. It's great for him, he's worked hard in the off-season, and hopefully he can carry this form into the Shield season."
South Australia started their chase in fine style through captain Travis Head, who with perfect timing struck three boundaries off Jackson Bird’s opening over.
Head clocked Bird for a free-hit six in the paceman’s next over before his innings was terminated on 35 by the part-time spin of Beau Webster (1-28).
While the Redbacks’ run-rate was ahead of the asking rate, the steady loss of wickets hampered the chase and their finals hopes.
Kane Richardson struck some mighty blows in his whirlwind 21-ball 36 and was the last man out for the Redbacks.
Test hopeful Jackson Bird was expensive, conceding 0-65 from six overs, and Faulkner was impressive in his return to bowling in taking 1-42 from his seven overs.
South Australia will head home before travelling to Perth for the first round of the Sheffield Shield starting on October 25, while Tasmania head to the MCG to take on Victoria.