LATE STRIKES AID BULLS
WA have hit back at Queensland on Day 2 of their Bupa Sheffield Shield clash at the Gabba, with the contest evenly poised at the halfway mark of the match.
The Warriors lead by 183 runs with five second innings wickets in hand.
Middle order batsmen Shaun Marsh and Adam Voges, who destroyed the XXXX GOLD Bulls in Saturday's one-dayer, gave the home side more heartache today.
The duo added 162 for the fourth wicket on a pitch that was still offering movement early before straightening up in the afternoon.
The golden twosome were able to put their side in a solid position thanks to another collapse triggered by their bowlers at the start of play.
The Bulls lost 5-17 at one stage yesterday and 5-24 in the space of half an hour today.
They finished with a modest 57-run first innings lead after being bowled out for 168, with all the damage done by pacemen Michael Hogan and Nathan Coulter-Nile.
Coulter-Nile made the crucial early breakthrough when he had the resilient Chris Hartley edging a gem of a ball to second slip for 23, while the remaining four batsmen also fell to catches behind the wicket.
The Bulls lost their last four wickets for three runs, with James Hopes the ninth man out flashing at a Hogan delivery for 43.
His 50-run stand with Hartley for the sixth wicket was the only partnership of any substance behind the openers' 83 yesterday.
Hogan finished with 4-43 and Coulter-Nile 3-41.
WA responded aggressively in their second innings, racing to 1-60 off 10 overs.
Opener Liam Davis tried to hit his way out of a form slump and took 14 off the usually frugal Cameron Gannon's second over but eventually perished at the hands of the big Bull, swinging hard outside off stump and getting a thick edge behind.
Davis made 22 off 19 balls.
Marcus Harris (29) picked up the cudgel and spanked seven boundaries before trying to hit Cameron Boyce out of the ground in the leg-spinner's first over and the Queenslanders were cock-a-hoop when Mike Hussey (8) drove James Hopes straight into the hands of Boyce on the stroke of lunch.
That's where the joy ended for the home side as Marsh and Voges set about methodically rebuilding the innings over the next three hours.
While Voges survived confident leg before shouts by Hopes and Boyce mid-innings, neither batsman offered a chance until Marsh was pinned lbw by Alister McDermott.
The tall left-handed was clearly unhappy with the decision as the ball hit him slightly above the knee roll, but the ball was jagging back and he made the fatal mistake of not playing a shot.
He made 80 from 180 balls.
The Warriors had their share of luck when John Rogers, who played at Valley last season in local Grade cricket, survived a massive appeal for caught behind on seven.
However, the momentum swung again in the third-last over of the day and first with the new ball when Hopes induced Voges into inside-edging onto his stumps.
Voges' 72 came from 201 balls and was a study of concentration.
WA ended the day at 5-240 with Rogers unbeaten on 13 and nightwatchman Jason Behrendorff on two.
Hopes bowled superbly to finish the day with 2-25 from 23 overs, while Gannon (1-49 from 17), Boyce (1-52 off 13) and McDermott (1-65 off 18) were the other successful bowlers.
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