Western Australia 387 for 7 (Inglis 138, Bancroft 90, Marsh 56, W Agar 2-56) South Australia 206 (Hunt 50, Smith 44, Agar 5-64) with 181 runs
Promoted to open after D’Arcy Short was controversially dropped in form, Inglis hit 138 off 110 balls to fuel Western Australia’s massive 387 for 7 after being sent in to bat.
It was Western Australia’s joint highest score in 50-over cricket as they took a stranglehold on a record-extending 16th league title.
South Australia took just 31.4 overs in a losing chase as WA successfully defended their title in a season where they won all eight games.
“It was fun getting to the top, up the fields… you don’t get a chance to score hundreds when you hit five or six,” said Inglis, who revealed he knew of his height to open at a team meeting on Tuesday morning. “We’ll see if I get a chance there [India] But it’s nice to have the form to go back.”
Entering at number 4 and playing as a specialist hitter, Mitchell Marsh continued his impressive return after a three-month hiatus following ankle surgery with a 30-ball 56 in the fastest half-century in a Marsh Cup final. Following his recent ton in the Sheffield Shield match against Tasmania, Marsh hit five sixes in a demonstration of his trademark strength to level off SA’s marking attack.
Chasing their first 50-over title since 2012, a nervous South Australia were unable to take on a stacked four-player Western Australian team who will form part of the upcoming three-match ODI series in India.
It was a disappointing end for South Australia, who have improved significantly in the Marsh Cup and Sheffield Shield this season after a spell in the wilderness.
“Bitterly disappointed, obviously,” said SA coach Jason Gillespie. “We know we are much better than what we showed there. We have a lot to take with us and hopefully we will get better.”
But South Australia’s fielding took a turn for the worse from there as Inglis was dropped by Henry Hunt on spinner Ben Manenti’s boundary at a crucial moment. Having made only 26 balls from 42 up to that point, Inglis suddenly shifted into gear and made South Australia pay with a belligerent attack as he only needed 45 more deliveries to reach his century.
Inglis mixed inventive strokes, including well-executed reverse scoops, with sweet textbook drives to demoralize South Australia, whose shoddy field effort also included Henry Thornton dropping Bancroft when he was at 51.
When a thunderstorm, rare in Perth this time of year, threatened to intervene, South Australian openers Hunt and Kelvin Smith provided the fireworks to complete a 50-run partnership within six overs. Smith was a late replacement for Jake Carder, who injured his hamstring during the warm-up.
But he fell to 44 after tamely spooning to the short midwicket as South Australia were chained by fast Andrew Tye and spinner Agar, claiming Hunt for 50 to trigger a run of wickets.
It was only a matter of time before Western Australia celebrated another triumph as the powerhouse remains on track to triple its domestic titles for the second season in a row.
Tristan Lavalette is a journalist from Perth