Doug Bollinger has unleashed a fiery spell to give NSW the upper hand at stumps on day two of their Sheffield Shield clash with Queensland.
Fiery NSW paceman Doug Bollinger is doing everything possible to revive his Test career.
On Saturday, he produced a devastating five-over spell of pace bowling to rip apart Queensland’s top order late on day two of their Sheffield Shield clash at the SCG to ram home the advantage created by young opener Ryan Carters’ maiden first-class century.
Bollinger (3-26) knocked over Queensland’s top order of Greg Moller (0, lbw), Nathan Reardon (3, bowled) and Usman Khawaja (10, caught behind) as Queensland finished at 3-53 in reply to NSW’s 9(dec)-397.
It gives hope that Bollinger’s 12-Test career isn’t over, but the 32-year-old says the key to his form is not heaping too much pressure on himself.
“Not putting pressure on myself, not trying to blast blokes out, just running in and bowling,” he said after play.
“It’s easy to get caught up in trying to blast guys out and trying to get wickets because you want to go higher or because you just want to get wickets.”
Carters’ was a terrific, composed knock of 154.
The Blues were in trouble at times during the rain-affected clash, but were pulled from the mire by Carters.
The 23-year-old showed maturity beyond his years to steady the home side after the loss of early wickets on Friday, and cashed in on day two.
Along with skipper Peter Nevill (70) he turned the momentum of the match with a 144-run sixth-wicket partnership which gave the Blues the upper hand.
Carters’ knock follows an impressive 94 in last week’s tour match against England.
But it was Bollinger’s contribution which caught the eye late in the day.
Seemingly on the international scrapheap – having not played a Test since running out of puff against England at Adelaide in 2010 – he has started the domestic season in roaring fashion.
He claimed 6-34 against Tasmania last month and now has 13 Shield wickets for the season, the most of any fast bowler, at an average of 19.
“I feel like I’m bowling well and getting the ball through well,” Bollinger said.
“I’m swinging the new ball and that’s a massive key.”
Former Test offspinner Nathan Hauritz was the best on a tough day for the visitors, though his figures of 3-123 weren’t flattering, and leggie Cameron Boyce cleaned up the tail to bag 3-80.
Queensland are a man down after seamer Matthew Gale suffered a right knee injury during his fourth over on Friday which is expected to sideline him for between six and ten weeks.
Despite being at a serious disadvantage for this game, Bulls skipper James Hopes says he wouldn’t like to see a rule change to allow substitutes able to bat and bowl in the event of an injury.
“To be honest, I don’t think so,” he told AAP.
“It’s just one of those things that happens sometimes. It’s just happened to us in four games in a row.”
Gale’s loss has been felt especially hard because of a pre-game decision to go with two spinners, with seamer Alister McDermott relegated to 12th man.
“When we lost the toss and were bowling first, we were still comfortable with the three quicks we had,” Hopes added.
“But when one of them goes down that makes things incredibly hard.”