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Sport Smith gets duck, mixed day for Test stars

12:30  10 october  2019
12:30  10 october  2019 Source:   msn.com

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There were mixed fortunes for Australia's Test stars during the round of JLT Sheffield Shield that was completed on Sunday. Handscomb did his chances of winning a Test recall no harm with a match-winning century for Victoria against South Australia in Adelaide.

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Steve Smith. © Getty Images Steve Smith.

Steve Smith made a rare duck and Usman Khawaja failed to fire on a day of fluctuating fortunes for Australia's Test cricketers.

Smith, having made an astounding 774 runs at an average of 110 during the Ashes, was out for a five-ball duck in NSW's Sheffield Shield clash with Queensland at the Gabba.

It was his first duck in first-class cricket in nearly three years.

Khawaja didn't fare much better, with the veteran out for one as Queensland were bowled out for 153 on a bowler-friendly wicket.

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Joe Burns (13) and Matt Renshaw (19) also failed to put up a big score.

But it was better news for Victorian opener Marcus Harris, who gave his Test hopes a massive shot in the arm with a classy 116 against South Australia.

Harris averaged just 9.66 over three Tests during the Ashes, but his century on Thursday was a big reminder to the national selectors of his talent.

The 27-year-old's knock was overshadowed by teammate Nic Maddinson, who finished the day unbeaten on 195.

Maddinson struck 21 fours and four sixes on his way to a fourth century in six Shield matches for Victoria since making the switch from NSW.

The 27-year-old, who played the last of his three Tests in 2016, looms as somewhat of a smokey for a Test recall this summer if he can continue his hot form.

Although it was raining wickets at the Gabba, star paceman Mitchell Starc (0-42 off 17 overs) couldn't get among them for NSW.

Marnus Labuschagne (69) was the only Queenslander able to withstand the carnage, continuing on from where he left off in the Ashes.

Blues opener David Warner finished the day unbeaten on 27, with NSW struggling at 3-50.

Warner averaged just 9.5 over five Tests during the Ashes, and is in desperate need of a big score to prove he can be Australia's go-to Test opener this summer.

Harris and Warner remain in the box seat to open for Australia this summer, despite the patchy form.

"Last year there was a lot of speculation around the guys who weren't in the (Test) team and it feels a little bit similar to that," Harris said.

"Obviously now I've played nine Tests I'm in a different position where I've been in the team and I'm sort of the incumbent, but I've got to keep making runs."

West Australian Cameron Bancroft showed plenty of grit in compiling a patient 30 off 70 balls for the Warriors against Tasmania on Thursday, but he couldn't go on with the job.

Warriors skipper Mitch Marsh scored 41 off 48 balls, and he'll be aiming to impress with the ball on Friday.

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