Western Australia remains alive in the race to the Sheffield Shield Final, but will have to rely on bonus points and other results to fall its way after today losing to the Victorian Bushrangers by eight wickets in Alice Springs.
The result leaves the Alcohol.Think Again Western Warriors 6.35pts adrift of second-placed New South Wales Blues, with one round to play in the home and away season.
WA next plays NSW at the WACA Ground and will require a win, plus bonus points, to leapfrog the Blues, while likely relying on losses to third and fourth placed Queensland (against Victoria) and South Australia (against Tasmania), respectively, to secure a place in the decider.
The Warriors were behind the eight-ball from Day 1 in the decisive battle at Traeger Park, Alice Springs, having been sent in by the Bushrangers and falling for just 146 in the first innings.
Ashton Turner (59) and D’arcy Short (42) managed to salvage a small, yet defendable total for WA, which appeared back in the hunt when David Moody (5-59) spearheaded an attack that had Victoria 5-106.
However, a maiden First Class century to nightwatch Chris Tremain (111) and handy half-ton to fellow fast bowler James Pattinson (57) guided Victoria to 322 and a first-innings lead of 176.
After early losses of wickets on Day 3, Hilton Cartwright (101) and Michael Klinger (55) built a crucial partnership to erase the deficit and begin rebuilding the Warriors’ bid for a Final berth.
But when Pattinson (5-58) trapped both set batters shortly after their milestones, WA’s order struggled to continue the momentum, managing a lead of just 82 runs.
Wickets to Moody (1-27) and Simon Mackin (1-18) on the final day gave the Warriors a glimmer of hope, but the total was simply too small to defend and the Bushrangers cantered home for an eight-wicket win and a place in the Shield Final.