James Pattinson has sent a timely reminder to Australian selectors ahead of the Ashes, destroying New South Wales to lead Victoria into a fourth Sheffield Shield final in five years.
In his first Shield match since December, Pattinson took five wickets as the Vics won by 63 runs at Drummoyne Oval in Sydney.
The 28-year-old paceman removed Nick Larkin and Moises Henriques in the space of three balls in the fourth over of NSW’s chase.
The Blues were reduced to 3-8 and looked unlikely to secure a victory.
Pattinson struck soon after, making up for going wicketless in the first innings by dismissing Test batsman Kurtis Patterson, Jake Edwards and Greg West to cap off his return.
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) March 14, 2019
#WIN | What a performance from our bowlers, NSW all out for 102. 👏
After being 9/82 in the first innings, we've pulled off an unlikely victory to win by 63 runs. 🙌
— Victorian Cricket Team (@VicStateCricket) March 14, 2019
Peter Siddle took three wickets for six in the match, a personal milestone after he was omitted from the last match.
Victoria’s win has secured their place in the final with one round left in the season.
The Vics will host the decider – potentially against NSW, who can lock in their spot with a win over Tasmania next week.