Sheffield Shield 2023-24 – Alex Carey finds form but Victoria hold on for victory after scare


Victoria 278 (Harper 151, Agar 5-45, Doggett 4-73) and 231 (Pucovski 65, McAndrew 4-50) beat South Australia 252 (Fraser-McGurk 101, Manenti 51, Scott 50, O’Neill 5-28) and 231 (Carey 81, Agar 46, O’Neill 5-83) by 23 runs

Alex Carey gave national selectors a timely reminder of his credentials but it wasn’t enough to stop Victoria defeating South Australia by 23 runs in the Sheffield Shield.
Victoria came into day four on top but a late cameo from swashbuckling quick Wes Agar made them nervous with only one wicket left to take.

But just as Agar was well and truly hitting his stride, Mitch Perry’s yorker dispatched him and sealed victory at Adelaide Oval.

Earlier, Test wicketkeeper Carey rejuvenated the Redbacks in his first match since being dropped from the ODI side for Australia’s second World Cup game.

SA lost two wickets inside an hour on day four, slumping to 93 for 5 in pursuit of 258 runs, before Carey forged the first steady partnership of the innings with Liam Scott.

Carey brought up his half-century with a single to deep point from the bowling of player-of-the-match Fergus O’Neill, who was again the pick of Victoria’s attack with 5 for 83 to complete a career-best match haul of 10-111.

Carey was dropped on the boundary rope shortly after passing 50, the tough chance instead going for six and proving a sign of things to come as he put his foot on the accelerator.

By the time he was caught trying to hit O’Neill down the ground just before lunch, Carey had struck 10 boundaries on his way to 81 runs from 116 deliveries.

The solid knock came at the perfect time for Carey, who was playing his only game between being axed for Josh Inglis at the World Cup and the beginning of the Test summer.

The breakthrough wicket of Carey energised Victoria and O’Neill turned the game on its head when he claimed allrounder Ben Manenti in the same over, caught behind by Sam Harper.

SA went to lunch needing 93 runs with three wickets in hand and only allrounder Scott left of the recognised batters, with the task proving too much despite Agar’s late efforts.

The Shield and Marsh Cup seasons are on break after this weekend until the end of Australia’s Test series with Pakistan and West Indies.


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