South Australia take the field at Hurstville Oval // Getty

Rules oversight hurts SA in Matador chase

Misunderstanding of points system hurts South Australia as they are knocked out of the Matador Cup

The West End Redbacks will be ruing an oversight of the tournament rules and regulations that may have cost them a spot in the Matador BBQs One-Day Cup finals.

The Redbacks were knocked out of the Matador Cup yesterday after a falling to Tasmania by 28 runs in a match they believed they needed to win with a bonus point to leapfrog Victoria into third position.

Starting the day four points behind the Bushrangers but with a vastly inferior Net Run Rate, SA believed they needed to earn four points for the win plus the extra bonus point to jump one ahead of the Bushrangers and qualify for Friday’s preliminary final.

Match report: South Australia v Tasmania

However, a closer inspection of the Matador Cup Playing Conditions reveals a regulation win would have been enough for South Australia to advance due to their tie with Western Australia earlier in the tournament.

The Playing Conditions state that in the result of teams finishing on equal points, the team with the most number of wins and ties will advance, and if that’s still equal, the team with the highest Net Run Rate will progress.

A regulation victory over the Tigers would have seen the Redbacks finish with three wins and a tie, bettering Victoria’s record of three wins, meaning SA would have advanced had they won the match.

But they were bowled out for 267 in the 39th over, falling 28 runs short of Tasmania’s 7-295, as they chased quick runs in the apparent belief that they needed a bonus-point win.

"I think our bowlers did a fantastic job to keep them to 300 on a pretty small ground on a very good wicket," skipper Travis Head told after play, having won the toss and elected to bowl first in order to set up a run chase for his side.

"We left ourselves a little short and lost wickets throughout. If we had a batter there at the end, I think we win." 

Every boundary in Redbacks' blitz

The Redbacks weren't the only ones to misinterpret the tournament rules; various media outlets, including, incorrectly reported that they needed to win with a bonus point in order to reach the finals.  

The first placed team after the preliminary matches qualifies directly for the final, while the second and third placed teams square-off in the preliminary final with the winner advancing to the tournament’s showpiece event.

Four points are awarded for a win, two points for a tie and no result, and one point for a bonus point, with the possibility of earning a two bonus points.

One bonus point is awarded if a team chases down its target within 40 overs, or 80 per cent of the deliveries in a reduced overs match, or if a team bowls out the opposition for 80 per cent or less of the first innings score.

Two bonus points are awarded if a team reaches its target within half of the available deliveries (25 overs in a 50-over match), or bowls out the opposition for less than half of the first innings total.

Queensland finished on top with 21 points courtesy of five wins from six matches and one bonus point, while reigning champions NSW Blues came in second on 17 points with four wins and a sole bonus point.

Victoria finished third with 16 points, with four points coming from bonus points secured in their three comprehensive victories, while SA finished with 12 points thanks to two wins, a tie and two bonus points.

Meg Lanning Steve Smith