Tight bowling from the South Australian quicks applied the brakes however, before leg spinner Lloyd Pope found both turn and wickets to ensure a change of innings shortly after lunch.

Pope provides hope

From the outset of day two, the Redbacks attack of Worrall, Grant and McAndrew were able to keep the run rate to a manageable level, but unable to find a way to remove either Philippe or Cartwright. Both batters brought up the half centuries in the morning session, and it looked as though the home side would be starting down a first innings total beginning with the number five.

Introduced into the attack as fans prayed for a much-needed breakthrough, Pope delivered. By the time WA declared nine wickets down, the spinner’s name had been inked into the scorebook four times, most importantly beside the names of both set batters in addition to the dangerous Josh Inglis.

Pope finished the innings with figures of 4/92, robbed of the chance to take a fifth when the visitors declared at the fall of the ninth wicket for 465 runs. Extracting turn and bounce from the Karen Rolton Oval surface, Pope could easily have taken more but for some fortunate placement on mistimed strokes from the WA line-up, but he is sure to be pleased with his efforts to bring an end to the first innings.

Classic Carey

Such is the pure talent of Redbacks keeper Alex Carey, his on-field exploits can occasionally be understated as something to be expected, but the catch he took today to give Daniel Worrall his first wicket is one that cannot be casually referenced.

When Joel Paris edged the delivery outside off stump, sending the ball flying to Carey’s left, the commentary team immediately knew how special the grab was. The description of ‘an absolute blinder’ perfectly fit the bill as Carey left the ground amidst a horizontal lunge, making the catch after the ball had passed him by. The momentum had already begun swinging towards South Australia throughout the second session, but the clinical way Carey made the grab cemented their charge back into the contest.

Double Debut Delight

Following the heroics of debutant Nathan McAndrew yesterday, fellow first-gamer Jake Carder must have been feeling the pressure to match the effort as he strode to the middle following the dismissal of opener Jake Weatherald. But if the left-hander, yesterday compared to Matthew Elliott by former Redbacks quick Mark Harrity, felt that pressure he certainly didn’t show it.

Joining forces with Henry Hunt at the crease, Carder didn’t try to force anything in the early going, instead giving himself a chance to settle into an innings that his new side needed to be a long and fruitful one. The sixth ball of his maiden innings would have raised a few eyebrows however, as the new recruit leaned on a perfect on-drive that reached the boundary in quick time to mark his first runs in red.

Carder’s debut innings displayed maturity beyond his experience as he left alone everything he didn’t need to play, respected the good deliveries and punished the bad. Fans in attendance were treated to some beautiful cover drives and the occasional full-blooded cut shot as Carder batted through the evening session alongside skipper Travis Head to be 58* at stumps.

It is very early days in his first-class career, but as the old adage goes, you can only take it one day at a time, and Jake Carder’s opening day with the blade representing South Australia was an absolute triumph.