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Scott Boland sets Sheffield Shield cricket alight after blitzing New South Wales

The Aussie favourite was at his scintillating best in the Sheffield Shield.

Scott Boland celebrates a wicket and Boland reacts.
Scott Boland (pictured) has ripped through the New South Wales batting line-up during the Sheffield Shield return. (Getty Images)

Aussie favourite Scott Boland has ripped through the New South Wales batting line-up with ease having helped put Victoria in an insurmountable position in the Sheffield Shield clash. New South Wales were bowled out for 252 in the first innings with Boland snaring three wickets.

Will Pucovski then put Victoria in a strong position on the weekend after his first century in more than three years. Nic Maddinson and Peter Handscomb joined in on the runs having all passed triple figures to give Victoria a huge 202 first innings lead.

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And while the Sydney Cricket Ground pitch appeared to be favouring the batters, Boland made sure there was no New South Wales fightback having ripped through the batting order taking 5-41. The first wicket of the day saw Boland take out Moses Henriques' stump to send it flying.

With rain interrupting the day's play on Monday, the home team were reeling at 8-116 and still needed 86 runs to send Victoria back out to the middle. Boland didn't manage to get a game for Australia this summer with Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins all remaining fit. However, Boland is waiting for an opportunity to get another crack in the baggy green and it could come in the upcoming series against New Zealand.

The Victorian had taken 23 wickets before the match, having a few less Sheffield Shield appearances in the 2023/24 season. Unfortunately, for Victoria, rain and lightning could stop the state from winning the match outright with the afternoon on the fourth day set to be rained out. Nathan Lyon remained not out on 17 runs as New South Wales battled towards the rain delay. This prompted anger from some fans, who felt the delay from bad light earlier in the day was unjustified.

Will Pucvoski returns to runs in Sheffield Shield return

While Boland stole the show on Monday, it was Pucovski's century that had cricket fans talking. Returning to the XI after missing the last game due to concussion issues, Pucovski registered his first century since November of 2020 on Sunday at the SCG.

The 26-year-old hit five boundaries in an extremely patient innings, bringing up his hundred off 258 balls for the seventh century of his first-class career. It comes as welcome news for Australian cricket fans, but particularly for Pucovski himself.

Scott Boland drinks.
Scott Boland (pictured) ripped through the New South Wales line-up in the Sheffield Shield. (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images) (Matt King via Getty Images)

Handscomb continued his form and proved why he has been Victoria's best batter to date, having hit 114 off 226 deliveries. Victoria sit second on the Marsh Cup Sheffield Shield ladder. Elsehwere, Cameron Bancroft is closing in on a century for Western Australia.

The opener leads the runs in the Sheffield Shield in 2024 and is averaging 56.08 for his state. Playing against Tasmania, Bancroft is on 81 at tea with Aussie allrounder Cameron Green accompanying him on 70.

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