In-form Short helps Victoria claim lead over NSW

In-form Short helps Victoria claim lead over NSW

Victory 264 of 6 (81* short, Harris 53, Kellaway 51, Hatcher 3-80) lead New south Wales 203 (52 Green, Henriques 29, Perry 4-24) for XX runs

Matthew Short has continued his rich streak of form to help Victoria take a 61-run lead at the halfway point of their Sheffield Shield match against New South Wales in Albury.

Victoria batted with increasing confidence at the Lavington Sports Ground to end the day on 264 for 6 in response to NSW’s 203. Short finished the day unbeaten on 81, with goaltender Sam Harper at 4 not out. Short came to the wicket with Victoria on 108 for 4, but struck nine bounds in a 150-ball vigilante strike. It was the fifth time in the last seven innings that Short has passed 50 at the domestic level.

Batting at No.6, Short shared a 92-run stand with Campbell Kellaway before the latter fell short of helping Victoria past NSW’s first innings total.

Ashish hopeful Marcus Harris built an early platform with an attentive 53 at the top of the order, while night watchman Mitch Perry scored 45 to ensure NSW started the day on the back foot.

Fast bowler Liam Hatcher picked up the wickets of Perry, Harris and Will Sutherland to finish on 3 for 80. Veteran pacer Trent Copeland was relentless throughout a long hot day, returning 2 for 48 from 24 overs.

Starting the match in second place in the table, Victoria are one of four teams hoping to join likely Shield final hosts Western Australia in the season decider. Bottom-placed NSW needs a win to avoid the longest winless streak in state history.