Bushrangers advance to RYOBI Final
The Commonwealth Bank Bushrangers are the first team through to the 2012-13 RYOBI One-Day Cup Final after guaranteeing their safe passage with victory over South Australia.
John Hastings finished unbeaten on 69 from just 57 balls as he guided Victoria to a thrilling two-wicket win with just three balls to spare.
The Bushrangers will ensure they host the February 27 Final with victory over Queensland in their final home-and-away match at the MCG next Saturday.
Hastings came to the wicket with the Bushrangers reeling at 5-124 in the 31st over chasing 256 for victory and struck six fours and three sixes in his highest one-day score.
"I picked my ball, kept it simple," Hastings told News Limited.
"We have a tail, we work hard on our batting, eight off the last over was pretty good.
"To get one over the Redbacks was good, we have lost a few to them this year."
South Australia won the toss on a typically flat Adelaide Oval pitch and elected to bat, with Will Sheridan striking early as he trapped former Carton gloveman Tim Ludeman in front for one.
A 162-run stand between Michael Klinger (87) and Callum Ferguson (110) had the Redbacks looking at a huge total, but competition debutant Fawad Ahmed stole the show, trapping the former Bushranger in front for his first RYOBI One-Day Cup wicket before snaring Melbourne Renegades teammate Tom Cooper and Alex Ross to finish with the fine figures of 3-47 from 13 overs.
When Hastings grabbed Dan Christian for one and Ferguson shortly after posting a fine century, the Bushrangers had staged an exceptional fight back, taking 6-60 to restrict the Redbacks to 7-255 from their 50 overs.
Ahmed was the pick of the bowlers with three wickets, while Hastings grabbed 2-61 from his 13 overs and Sheridan snared 2-43 from nine.
Darren Pattinson (0-45 off seven), Cameron White (0-14 off two) and Scott Boland (0-38 off six) went wicket less.
Victoria's chase got off to a shaky start when Rob Quiney was out LBW to Kane Richardson from the second ball of the innings for four.
Chris Rogers fell shortly after for 17 and when Jake Haberfield claimed Peter Handscomb (19) and Cameron White for a second ball duck in the 17th over, the visitors were in trouble at 4-60.
But a 64-run partnership between David Hussey and Michael Hill placed the Bushrangers back in the hunt at 4-124 before the left-hander was removed by Richardson for 25.
Hussey and Hastings were able to put on 53 in 52 balls before Hussey fell for a masterful 87 to Richardson with a century in sight.
When Sheridan fell next ball for a golden duck, the Bushrangers were 7-187 in the 40th over and well short of their target.
Boland made a valuable five in a 31-run partnership with Hastings, but when he was run out in the 45th over the Redbacks were favourites.
An unbroken 37-run stand between Hastings and Pattinson (16 not out) saw the Bushranger home.
Needing eight from the final over, Pattinson smashed a massive six down the ground off the bowling of Dan Christian to help the Bushrangers advance into yet another RYOBI One-Day Cup Final.
To see a full scorecard, click here.