Tasmania will be looking to secure a place in the Sheffield Shield Final when the Tigers take on the Victorian Bushrangers at Blundstone Arena from Wednesday to Saturday this week.
Tasmania enter the clash in winning form after defeating South Australia by just 16 runs in a nail-biting finish, while the Bushrangers are also riding high after running out narrow 23-run winners over New South Wales in a tense affair at the Junction Oval.
These victories saw Tasmania rise to second position on the Shield table and Victoria to third, meaning this final round home clash will decide which outfit takes on the top-placed, high-flying Queensland Bulls in the 2017-18 Sheffield Shield Final starting Friday 23 March.
This match will take on even greater significance being the annual ‘Scott Mason Memorial Match’, named after former Tasmanian first-class cricketer Scott Mason, who tragically passed away from a heart attack in 2005 at the young age of just 28.
It's also our chance to honour former State cricketer Tony Benneworth who passed away tragically last weekend in a freak boating accident, with the players wearing black armbands and Tony's Number 7 being painted on the field (he was our seventh Sheffield Shield player) as our mark of respect.
The second-placed Tigers and third-placed Bushrangers have met once so far this summer, playing out a draw at the MCG back in November last year.
Alex Doolan was the hero on that occasion, scoring a sublime 247 not out in the Tigers’ second innings, while skipper George Bailey also impressed with scores of 106 and 59.
WATCH: Doolan's double ton of joy
Both the Tigers and Redbacks managed to generate plenty of swing with the Dukes ball at Blundstone Arena, so fans should expect to see more of the same in this fixture, with Bushrangers duo Chris Tremain and Scott Boland, alongside Tasmanian stars Tom Rogers and Jackson Bird, the four leading wicket-takers in the competition.
Both sides also possess plenty of international experience with Jackson Bird, George Bailey, Matthew Wade and Alex Doolan set to take on the likes of Glenn Maxwell, Cameron White, Aaron Finch, Peter Siddle and Dan Christian.
With so many big names and so much riding on the end result, this match has all the markings of a Sheffield Shield blockbuster.
See you at beautiful Blundstone Arena beside Bellerive Beach with FREE public entry each day of the Shield clash from 10:30am - 5:30pm OR you can live stream all the action on your laptop or mobile device via - www.cricket.com.au
FULL SQUADS to be trimmed at the coin toss:
George Bailey (Captain), Jackson Bird, Alex Doolan, Jake Doran, Andrew Fekete, Hamish Kingston, Ben McDermott, Riley Meredith, Simon Milenko, Sam Rainbird, Tom Rogers, Jordan Silk, Matthew Wade, Beau Webster.
Aaron Finch (Captain), Fawad Ahmed, Scott Boland, Dan Christian, Jackson Coleman, Travis Dean, Seb Gotch, Marcus Harris, Glenn Maxwell, Peter Siddle, Chris Tremain, Eamonn Vines, Cameron White.
Sheffield Shield Ladder:
1st - Queensland Bulls: 9 matches, 5 wins, 3 draws, 1 loss, 14.87 bonus points, 47.87 total points.
2nd - Tasmanian Tigers: 9 matches, 4 wins, 2 draws, 3 losses, 13.29 bonus points, 39.29 total points.
3rd - Victorian Bushrangers: 9 matches, 3 wins, 5 draws, 1 loss, 16.11 bonus points, 39.11 total points.
Sheffield Shield Match Details:
Tasmanian Tigers vs Victorian Bushrangers: Wednesday 14 March - Saturday 17 March, Blundstone Arena, 10:30am - 5:30pm daily.