Bulls turn Blues hopes to dust
The Western Warriors have blown the perfect chance to set up a home preliminary final and a shot at Twenty20 glory in suffering a 62-run loss to Queensland at the WACA Ground.
WA limped along to be all out for 127 inside 18 overs, chasing 190 for victory, and have now missed the chance to repeat last year’s performance by qualifying for the lucrative Twenty20 Champions League.
Half-centuries to Lee Carseldine and Nathan Reardon were enough to push the Bulls to an impressive 3-189 before the inconsistent WA batting line up failed dismally in its chase.
Needing 9.5 runs per over to reach their victory target the Warriors never looked likely, losing the Liam Davis (five), Craig Simmons (26) and Adam Voges (zero) to Queensland quick Nathan Rimmington early in the innings.
The match was effectively over when Theo Doropoulos played a weak shot to a Ben Cutting short ball and was caught at mid-off in the fifth over, leaving the home side dangling at 4-50.
Skipper Marcus North and recently returned international ‘keeper Luke Ronchi provided some brief stability in the middle order for WA, but the shortest form of the game favours the bold over the bland.
Rimmington was the most influential bowler on the night, claiming match figures of 3-14 from three overs. Bulls captain Chris Simpson took 3-27 from his four overs.
Carseldine was in devastating form with the bat for the visitors, blasting his third 50 in as many Twenty20 matches batting at no.3.
Carseldine’s knock of 74 came from just 45 balls and came to an end when he attempted an audacious flick shot off Brett Dorey which ended up in the hands of Umar Gul and short fine leg.
Reardon belted five 6s and two 4s on his way to an unbeaten 51 from 35 deliveries.
Pakistani paceman Umar Gul (2-38) bowled well and could have had more wickets in the last match of his guest stint for WA and received solid support from part-time finger spinner North (1-23).
Early in the Bulls’ innings it looked as if they would struggle with the pace and bounce of Gul and fellow opening bowler Dorey, but Carseldine and Reardon got the visitors on top.
Youngster Justin Coetzee had a mixed debut for WA in front of 12,562 fans, dropping a difficult diving catch and stepping over the rope while attempting another in the deep.
He was relegated to no.8 in the batting order behind Gul, managing 23 not out in a short stint at the crease.