New South Wales Blues batsman Daniel Hughes has scored a determined half-century in a seven-wicket loss to South Australia in the JLT One-Day Cup at the WACA on Thursday.
In reply to the Blues total of 241, South Australia secured victory with more than 11 overs to spare with Jake Weatherald (106 not out) the stand out for the Redbacks. Hughes top scored for NSW with a gritty 79 from 98 balls.
Fast bowlers Mickey Edwards (2-66) and Sean Abbott (1-72) returned best figures for the Blues in a disappointing match for the team. South Australia finished 3/245 from 38.2 overs.
The Blues were sent into bat by South Australian captain Jake Lehmann after stand-in skipper Kurtis Patterson lost the toss, and similar to the match against Western Australia on Tuesday, it was again a difficult start.
NSW lost 4/64 within the first 15 overs but Hughes kept the scoreboard ticking over and held the innings together.
He shared a valuable 79-run partnership in the middle of the innings with 18-year-old Blues rookie Jack Edwards (42), who again impressed in just his second match of One-Day domestic cricket for his state.
Daniel Sams was another to again contribute some precious runs down the order after he peeled off 62 from 60 balls on Tuesday.
Sams scored 30 from 27 balls against South Australia and took 18 runs off just one Cameron Valente over before he was bowled on the final ball of that over. He was well supported by Steve O’Keefe (20) at the end of the innings.
Former Blues leg-spinner Adam Zampa (3-37) claimed best figures for South Australia including a brilliant delivery to remove the dangerous Moises Henriques (16).
An absolute pearler from Sean Abbott removed the dangerous Alex Carey (5) early in the run chase and the Blues achieved the perfect start with the ball.
Callum Ferguson (15) then joined Weatherald in the middle and both men looked comfortable.
The Blues needed something special to break the partnership and it was Nick Larkin that produced the magic. The 28-year-old from Grafton took a spectacular hanger at first slip from the bowling of Mickey Edwards to dismiss Ferguson which certainly energised the fast bowler.
However, Weatherald and Lehmann (87) stole the game away from the Blues with some dominant and composed batting. The pair shared a 171-run third wicket partnership which attained most of the runs required.
Weatherald hit a six to level the scores in the 37th over and a boundary by Cooper (12 not out) finished the game giving South Australia a bonus point.
The Blues next match is on Sunday against Victoria at North Sydney Oval.