Redbacks on ropes, WA hit back in Shield

Sam Whiteman fell just short of notching his maiden double-century but Western Australia still ended the day full of smiles in their Sheffield Shield clash with South Australia at the WACA Ground.

On a topsy-turvy day when 16 wickets fell, WA were cruising at 0-308 before suffering a big collapse to be all out for 444 in reply to SA's first-innings total of 299.

Warriors pace duo Lance Morris and Matt Kelly then worked their magic with the ball as the Redbacks went to stumps on day three in all sorts of trouble at 6-66, still needing a further 79 runs to make WA bat again.

Kelly (2-12) started the destruction with the scalps of Jake Weatherald (13) and Daniel Drew (duck), before Morris (3-32) ripped through the middle order.

Redbacks opener Henry Hunt ended the day unbeaten on 27 but he faces a daunting rescue mission alongside Wes Agar (5no) when play resumes on Monday.

On a day that belonged to the bowlers, Whiteman moved from his overnight score of 131 into the 190s.

But he was caught behind for 193 off 394 balls during the middle session when he unleashed a wide slash in a bid to increase WA's run rate.

His dismissal came amid a collapse of 7-91 as WA went from 0-308 to 7-399.

Spinner Ben Manenti sparked the fightback to finish with 5-107, while Agar (2-104) and Brendan Doggett (1-74 off 34 overs) toiled hard.

The Redbacks suffered an injury blow midway through the day when paceman Jordan Buckingham damaged his right wrist diving to save a boundary.

Buckingham was left writhing in pain after sliding awkwardly over the wrist.

He was assessed by medical staff on the boundary for several minutes before the decision was made to take him from the field.

Cameron Bancroft (135) was the only batsman to fall during a hard-fought morning session that yielded just 69 runs for WA.

His 308-run partnership with Whiteman was WA's fifth-highest opening stand in first-class cricket.

Mike Veletta and Geoff Marsh still hold the record after putting together a mammoth 431-run partnership against South Australia at the WACA during the 1989/90 season.

WA'S HIGHEST FIRST-CLASS OPENING PARTNERSHIPS

431 - Mike Veletta and Geoff Marsh v South Australia, WACA, 1989/90

374 - Mike Veletta and Geoff Marsh v Tamil Nadu, WACA, 1988/89

328 - Colin Milburn and Derek Chadwick v Queensland, Gabba, 1968/69

310 - Mike Veletta and Geoff Marsh v Tasmania, Bellerive Oval, 1988/89

308 - Cam Bancroft and Sam Whiteman v South Australia, WACA, 2022/23