Test batsman Usman Khawaja rescued Queensland from disaster but there was no respite for Bulls opener Matt Renshaw in their JLT Sheffield Shield clash with NSW in Brisbane on Tuesday.
Reeling at 2-5, Khawaja's 51 helped Queensland recover to be 5-129 at stumps on day two at Allan Border Field with a 41-run lead over the Blues.
Marnus Labuschagne was not out 56.
Khawaja is in fine form before his expected selection as Australia's Test No.3 for the Ashes opener at the Gabba next week.
He backed up his impressive 78 not out that dominated the Bulls' 183 first innings.
He has 346 Shield runs at 86.50 this summer.
However, Test opener Renshaw failed again when he was caught down the leg-side off a fired up Doug Bollinger (2-35) for just one.
Renshaw - who made 16 in the first dig - now has 70 Shield runs at 11.66 ahead of the first Ashes Test starting in Brisbane on November 23.
"Obviously he'd be disappointed he hasn't got the runs on the board but form-wise he is actually going OK," Queensland coach Wade Seccombe said of Renshaw.
"He has batted time. He doesn't have the runs on the board but he has got the time on the board.
"Absolutely he should be picked for first Test."
In contrast, Khawaja is in fine form before his expected selection as Australia's Test No.3 for the Ashes opener.
"He's in special touch. In all conditions we have played in this season he has been a class above - he has done it easy," Seccombe said.
Ex-Test quick Bollinger had earlier trapped Joe Burns LBW with the first ball of Queensland's second dig to have the hosts faltering at 2-5.
Khawaja saved blushes with his two hour knock that included nine fours.
His 86-run third wicket stand with Labuschagne ended when he was caught in the deep trying to tonk Test spinner Nathan Lyon (1-29).
Earlier, NSW's forgotten Test No.6 contender Daniel Hughes provided a not so subtle Ashes reminder before being denied a century by a dramatic run out.
While Test wicketkeeper hopeful Peter Nevill failed with 17 on Tuesday, Hughes surged to 98 not out before tailender Bollinger was run out to promptly end the Blues' first innings at 271 before tea on day two.
Hughes wanted a second run to move to 99 and retain the strike but Bollinger was sensationally run out to quickly kill off his quest for a fourth first class century.
He struck 17 fours before disaster struck.
Hughes is repaying NSW's faith after the Blues controversially opted for the left-hander over last season's leading Shield run scorer Ed Cowan for the first class season start.
NSW resumed their first dig on Tuesday at 3-83.
Queensland: Joe Burns, Matt Renshaw, Usman Khawaja (c), Marnus Labuschagne, Sam Truloff, Jack Wildermuth, Jimmy Peirson, Mitchell Swepson, Michael Neser, Brendan Doggett, Luke Feldman. Mark Steketee 12th.
NSW: David Warner, Nic Maddinson, Steve Smith (c), Kurtis Patterson, Moises Henriques, Daniel Hughes, Peter Nevill (wk), Trent Copeland, Sean Abbott, Nathan Lyon, Doug Bollinger. Harry Conway (12th man)