The West End Redbacks have recorded a massive 102-run over the Cricket Australia XI after posting the highest team total in Australian domestic 50-over cricket on Saturday.
South Australia racked up a mammoth 7-420 from their 50 overs due in large to centuries from skipper Callum Ferguson (154) and Jake Weatherald (141), and a quick-fire cameo from Alex Gregory (42no from 24 balls).
The brutal innings zoomed past the previous best total of 4-405 by Queensland against Western Australia at the Gabba in February 2004.
“We certainly didn’t have that in the back of our minds, the record, but it’s certainly pleasing,” Redbacks skipper Ferguson said.
“We talk about getting two guys set at the crease together and the sort of damage you can do when that happens. We’ve managed to do that a couple of times in the past few games and voilà, we’ve ended up with two wins.
“It’s great to see that come to fruition. When you’re playing in good conditions like this you’ve got to make the most of your starts and Jake and I were able to do that today.”
Fighting knocks from Jake Carder (93), Josh Inglis (68) and Ryan Gibson (68) threatened to pull off the impossible, but in the end the new domestic 50-over summit was too difficult to climb with the CA XI bowled out for 318 in 42 overs.
Carder’s fine innings of 93 from 83 balls gave the youngsters a sniff of an upset, but his dismissal was the end of the chase and five balls later the innings was over.
It was not a day for the bowlers at Sydney’s Hurstville Oval with 738 runs scored in just 92 overs as both teams took full advantage of the short boundary that would have barely measured 50 metres.
The signs of a blowout score were ominous early when Weatherald bashed the new ball to all parts, racing to his half-century from only 31 deliveries as the Redbacks plundered 90 runs off the first 10 overs.
Left-handed Weatherald, who hit 17 fours and six sixes, was the first to reach his ton, hitting a mighty six off the 66th ball he faced to bring up triple figures.
Ferguson followed his opener to a century from a more sedate 85 balls, but once he was done saluting those in attendance and his teammates, the right-hander clocked another 54 runs to finish with 17 fours and three maximums.
An incredulous 500 looked possible at one point, but the steady loss of wickets at the back end wiped out that idea.
However, the highest team total was always within reach, and after the two century-makers departed it was left to Alex Gregory (42 from 24 balls) to launch three huge sixes and seal the record with an over to spare.
Left-armer Tom O’Donnell was the pick of the CA XI bowlers, taking (3-84) including two consecutive wickets to be on a hat-trick that was nullified by Gregory.
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Mystery spinner Arjun Nair (1-68) was also impressive after receiving 16 stitches in his leg following a fielding mishap in the first over of the day.
Coincidentally, it’s the same venue where Aussies pace spearhead Mitchell Starc lacerated his leg and required surgery and 36 stitches.
Just as they showed at the same venue eight days ago, when they fell within one blow of chasing down 329 against a star-studded NSW Blues outfit, the CA XI are undaunted in their pursuit of colossal total.
The tournament rookies got off to a flying start with Inglis and Gibson crashing boundary after boundary, reaching 1-101 after 10 overs.
But where the CA XI missed a few chances which assisted the epic Ferguson-Weatherald partnership, the Redbacks chipped away with wickets and held onto all their opportunities.
The huge margin of victory earned South Australia a bonus point and in doing so moved them into third spot on the competition ladder on 12 points behind Queensland (17 points) and Victoria (16 points).
The Redbacks final group stage clash is on Wednesday against Tasmania, while the CA XI face Western Australia on Monday.
“I thought it was a really good effort by the boys,” Carder said after play. “To be honest, (chasing) 420 I thought we were a big chance on this ground, very small boundaries. Thought if we took it deep we were a real big shot here today.”
Highest totals in Australian domestic cricket
- 7-420 (50) - SA v CA XI, Hurstville Oval, 2016
- 4-405 (50) - Qld v WA, Brisbane, 2004
- 3-402 (47.2) - Qld v Tas, North Sydney, 2014
- 1-398 (50) - Tas v Qld, North Sydney, 2014
- 4-397 (50) - NSW v Tas, Bankstown Oval, 2001