Three Sydney University players - Ed Cowan, Ryan Carters and Nick Larkin - helped New South Wales to a conclusive victory over Victoria in the Elimination Final of the Matador BBQs Cup at Drummoyne Oval last night.
University captain Nick Larkin entered the match in highly unusual circumstances. When opener Daniel Hughes was struck on the helmet by a short-pitched delivery from Peter Siddle, he was ruled out of the match on medical advice after taking a concussion test. Under Cricket Australia's new concussion rules, a concussed player may be replaced by another player of the same type, who has the right to take a full part in the game. Larkin became the first player to substitute into a game under these rules when he was named to replace Hughes.
Hughes had shared an opening partnership of 41 with Ed Cowan before he was injured in the ninth over of the innings, with the Blues chasing Victoria's total of 242. Cowan went on to add 104 for the second wicket with Nick Maddinson, putting NSW on track for victory. By the time he gloved a ball from Scott Boland through to Matthew wade, he had hit 64 from 87 deliveries, with eight boundaries. It was his fourth half-century of another highly successful Matador Cup campaign.
Larkin was able to bat under the new regulations, but rain ended play as he walked to the crease, with the Blues a long way ahead of their Duckworth?lewis target.
New South Wales will now play Queensland in the final on Sunday. Larkin remains with the Blues squad - his place in First Grade for today's match with Hawkesbury is taken by his brother James.