WA to push on after dominant Shield day

Queensland dropped four chances in the opening two sessions and paid dearly, with Western Australia putting them to the sword to be in command after Thursday’s first day of their Sheffield Shield match at the WACA Ground.

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Queensland captain Chris Hartley won the toss and elected to bowl, hoping to find some life in the deck before it flattened out. His bowlers created five chances in the first two sessions, but only one was taken and the Warriors capitalised.

At stumps, WA were 1-321 with Cameron Bancroft 154 not out and Shaun Marsh on 95.

WA openers Bancroft and Marcus Harris were each dropped twice, significantly changing day one.

Harris was dropped by Hartley when 20 and then on 59 by Jack Wildermuth with Mark Steketee the bowler on both occasions. He eventually had his man for 65 with a good catch at point by Mitchell Swepson after a 116-run opening partnership.

Bancroft was dropped twice at second slip by Charles Hemphrey on 33 off Wildermuth and 63 off Peter George. He cashed in, backing up his 144 from last week’s draw against NSW with his seventh first-class ton.

“That’s what I strive for. Over the last two years, I’ve watched Adam Voges and Maxy Klinger, and even Marcus North before that, come out and be so consistent and back up big scores with even bigger scores,” Bancroft said.

“I take a lot of inspiration from that so for me to do this is pleasing but the challenge with batting is to be consistent. It’s a good start but I certainly need to do it more often.”

Marsh joined him in an unbeaten stand of 205 on return from being part of the Test squad in New Zealand.

WA must win to be any chance of reaching next month’s Shield final, with Nathan Coulter-Nile available to bowl on day two, but then being replaced in the team by Joel Paris as he heads off for the T20 World Cup.

Bancroft knows the importance of giving the bowlers enough time to take 20 wickets.

“We’ve seen all year playing here that you need time to bowl teams out,” Bancroft said.

“There’s no doubt that we are going to be positive being in such a good position now. It’s going to be hard work so we are going to need that time.”

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