The final day of the Round 7 Sheffield Shield match has arrived with two possible outcomes. New South Wales need the final two Queensland wickets remaining to enforce the follow-on and then it's a case of bowling the team out. For the Maroons it's a question of survival to fight out a draw on a pitch that is deteriorating. The Queenslanders began the day on 8/341 with skipper Chris Hartley not out on 40 and Mark Steketee on 15. The Two Blues opened the bowling with spinner Will Somerville and Doug Bollinger who were unable to snare any early wickets. Queensland skipper Chris Hartley was dogged at the crease and made a fine half century. New South Wales were unable to take a Queensland wicket during the morning session due to stout, resolute batting from Hartley and Steketee. The pair added a valuable 70 runs and trail New South Wales by 192 runs. Hartley remained not out 76 whilst Mark Steketee was unbeaten on 46, this innings being his highest first class knock, easily beating the previous mark of 34 runs.
The afternoon session moved slowly with Hartley and Steketee providing stout resistance. Doug Bollinger put his back into a thankless spell that kept both batsman on their toes. Mark Steketee brought up his first ever half century in Shield cricket. Yesterday NSW Blues Trent Copeland dropped Steketee with an absolute sitter of a chance at first slip. That drop has proved costly as the next wicket to fall cost 103 runs and possibly a shot at an outright victory. Steketee was eventually dismissed by Will Somerville, making it seven wickets for the off-spinner. In a bizarre play, Steketee was out caught after hitting a ball into a close in-fielder with the ball ballooning upwards with Sean Abbott taking the catch, Steketee out for 53.
Day three began in warm sunny conditions with the overnight batsman for Queensland in Peter Forrest 48* and Joe Burns 34* at the crease. New South Wales elected for a spin /pace attack led by Doug Bollinger and Arjun Nair. Both bowlers were tidy in their spells with the very smallest of chances offered by the Queensland batsmen. Trent Copeland for New South Wales bowled a steady stint, but was unable to gain any inroads into the Maroons innings. Peter Forest and Joe Burns went quietly about their work, picking off the odd single and boundary and like New South Wales the previous day, the wicket was proving to be a batsman's paradise. Sean Abbott and Will Somerville picked up where Nair and Copeland left off and they to found little assistance in the pitch. The status quo would be broken up however when Will Somerville dismissed Peter Forrest for 79. Forrest attempted a loose hook shot that caught a top edge which saw 12th man Harry Conway take an easy catch at leg gully. Queensland were 1/140. At lunch Queensland were 1-144, Joe Burns not out on 55 and Marnus Labuschagne 1 not out. Queensland added 59 runs to their overnight total.
The final session of the day saw New South Wales strengthen their grip on the game via a superb display of spin bowling from Will Somerville. Somerville took another 3 wickets by taking the scalps of Jack Wildermuth 21, Jason Floros 12 and century maker Joe Burns 108. Wildermuth and Burns were bowled by superb deliveries, whilst Floros was deemed to have made the faintest of edges and was caught by keeper Peter Neville. Somerville found himself with a 6 wicket haul. Spinner Arjun Nair chipped in with a wicket by trapping Michael Neser LBW for 10. It was a fortunate decision as the ball appeared to be heading down leg side, but the finger was raised and Neser had to head back into the pavilion. The Queenslanders made 103 runs and lost 4 wickets in the final session At stumps Queensland were 8/341 with skipper Chris Hartley not out on 40 with Mark Steketee 15 not out.