Cricket: Holdsworth's career best

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The Independent Online
WAYNE HOLDSWORTH returned a career best of 7 for 41 to help New South Wales dismiss Queensland for 75 and take his state to the brink of victory in the Sheffield Shield final in Sydney yesterday.

Holdsworth's third haul of seven wickets in as many matches gave him 53 wickets, the most in Australia's first-class game this season and left his side with what should be the simple task of scoring 46 runs to win. His performance in this competition will have also improved his chances of being chosen for the Australian Test party to tour England next month.

At the close, New South Wales were 9 for 1. Victory today would give them the Shield for a record 41st time.

The match had been finely balanced when play resumed on Monday, with New South Wales 291 for 6 in reply to Queensland's first innings 311. They were then dismissed soon after lunch for 341.

Queensland's total was the lowest in a Shield final, beating the 103 they made here three years ago when New South Wales won by 345 runs.

SHEFFIELD SHIELD FINAL (Sydney) (Fourth day of five): Queensland 311 and 75 (W Holdsworth 7-41): New South Wales 341 (G Matthews 78, M Slater 69) and 9 for 1.