Khawaja’s big chance to put his name up in lights

Mercury (Hobart) - - CRICKET - LAINE CLARK

THE stage is set for Us­man Khawaja to stake a Test claim af­ter steer­ing Queens­land to 1-167 at stumps on day two of their Sh­effield Shield clash with WA at the Gabba.

The classy left-han­der cruised to 30 not out with opener Bryce Street un­beaten on 55 in re­ply to WA’s fight­ing first dig of 322.

Queens­land opener Joe Burns had also hoped to make na­tional se­lec­tors sit up and take no­tice with his im­pres­sive 76 off 119 balls, in­clud­ing 11 bound­aries. Burns now ap­pears in the mix af­ter Aus­tralian coach Justin Langer ad­mit­ted that there were two spots in the top six up for grabs ahead of the first Test against Pak­istan start­ing on Novem­ber 21 in Bris­bane.

In Ade­laide, SA pace­man Chadd Say­ers col­lected a ca­reer-best bowl­ing haul to give the Red­backs a sniff of up­set­ting shield leader NSW.

Chas­ing 298 to win, the Red­backs were 1-1 at stumps on the third day of play af­ter Say­ers had taken 13 wick­ets across the Blues’ two in­nings. Say­ers’ match fig­ures of 13-131 are the sev­enth-best for South Aus­tralia in shield his­tory.

Af­ter tak­ing 8-64 in the first dig, Say­ers yes­ter­day claimed 5-67 as the Blues were bowled out for 253 in their se­cond in­nings with Nick Larkin top­scor­ing with 91. Say­ers took the ini­tial two NSW wick­ets be­fore Larkin fea­tured in a steady­ing 70-run part­ner­ship with Moises Hen­riques who was dis­missed for 38. Larkin put on an­other handy stand with debu­tant Matt Gilkes (30), adding 60 runs and tak­ing the vis­i­tors to 3-184.

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