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Match Report:

Scorecard

Vics crawl on tricky Shield pitch against Queensland

Marcus Harris and Peter Handscomb both scored fifties on a difficult day for batting in Melbourne

Victoria v Queensland | Sheffield Shield | Day 1

Victoria have battled their way to 4-201 after a slow first day of their Marsh Sheffield Shield clash with Queensland at the MCG.

On a tricky, green pitch, the Vics carefully went about their business after being sent in to bat by Bulls captain Usman Khawaja.

Test contender Marcus Harris hit a patient, but important 73 in front of national selector Tony Dodemaide.

Harris digs in for 73 on tricky MCG pitch

Coming off a century on a flat pitch at the Junction Oval against Tasmania last week, this knock, from 212 balls, was arguably better as it was made in tough conditions.

Harris, along with Cameron Bancroft, is in line to replace David Warner when the veteran opener bows out of Test cricket in January.

Fellow Test prospect Peter Handscomb hit 66 before falling caught behind to Jack Wildermuth.

The Vics' run-rate is sitting at just above two-an-over and they will need to lift that significantly on Friday if they want to force a result in the four-day match.

Queensland were rocked by the withdrawals of quicks Michael Neser and Mark Steketee ahead of the match.

Coming off two agonising defeats in a row, the Bulls are without arguably their two most important bowlers.

Neser returned to Brisbane to be with his partner giving birth, while Steketee woke up feeling ill and withdrew from the team.

Former Western Australian bowler Liam Guthrie was brought into the Bulls' team.

Guthrie claimed the key wicket of Will Pucovski, who has been below his prolific best since returning to the Shield side this season, for five.

With Test spinner Todd Murphy resting, left-arm bowler Doug Warren was handed a first-class debut for Victoria.

Queensland and Victoria sit in the bottom two spots on the table with each state only having won one game from their first four matches to start the season.

Sheffield Shield 2023-24 standings

Team
Matches played
M
Wins
W
Losses
L
Drawn
D
No results
N/R
Deductions
Ded.
Batting Bonus
Bat
Bowling Bonus
Bowl
Total points
PTS
1 Western Australia Men Western Australia Men WA 10 5 2 3 0 0 5.53 9.4 47.93
2 Tasmanian Tigers Men Tasmanian Tigers Men TAS 10 5 2 3 0 0 6.06 8.3 47.36
3 NSW Men NSW Men NSW 10 4 3 3 0 0 6.31 9 42.31
4 Victoria Men Victoria Men VIC 10 4 4 2 0 0 4.74 8.2 38.94
5 South Australia Men South Australia Men SA 10 3 6 1 0 0 5.19 9.3 33.49
6 Queensland Bulls Queensland Bulls QLD 10 2 6 2 0 0 3.54 8.3 25.84

M: Matches played

W: Wins

L: Losses

D: Drawn

N/R: No results

Ded.: Deductions

Bat: Batting Bonus

Bowl: Bowling Bonus

PTS: Total points