Test pair give Qld upper hand against Vics

Australia and Queensland opener Joe Burns made a composed half-century against Victoria.
Australia and Queensland opener Joe Burns made a composed half-century against Victoria.

Half-centuries to Test pair Joe Burns and Marnus Labuschagne have helped Queensland to a commanding position at 4-308 at stumps on the first day of their Sheffield Shield clash with Victoria at Junction Oval.

The duo did the heavy lifting early in the Bulls' innings before Charlie Hemphrey took over, the Englishman unbeaten on 87 with skipper Jimmy Peirson, who won the toss, not out on 15.

Burns and Labuschagne had looked in fine touch and will be kicking themselves at the missed opportunity to cement their Test spots with centuries.

In his first match since making a career-best 180 for Australia against Sri Lanka, Burns scored 60 before he was well caught by Cameron White at second slip off Scott Boland's bowling.

Tea was called three balls early on Saturday when Labuschagne played an ill-advised shot on 59 and holed out to mid-on off the bowling of part-time spinner Matt Short.

"It's very disappointing but, take the personal side out, and it was disappointing to leave the team in a (difficult) position," Labuschagne told reporters.

"I think I let the team down a little bit there, but I think all the guys that are out will be disappointed not to cash in on a very good wicket and a quick outfield.

"I don't usually get caught at mid-on trying to hit a six with three balls before lunch ... it was just (poor) game awareness.

"(But) I felt really good out there ... and from a team perspective, we're in a good position."

Opener Matt Renshaw failed to advance his case for Ashes inclusion.

A frustrated Renshaw (29) was out sweeping soon after he tried a rash reverse shot more common in the BBL, popping up the easiest of catches to Chris Tremain.

Boland was the pick of the bowlers with 1-38 from 21 overs with six maidens.

"I think we stuck at it pretty well (as a unit) ... it's a pretty flat wicket," Boland said.

"It hasn't done as much as what we thought.

"I think we could have had a few more nicks ... we had a lot of plays and misses but it just wasn't to be."

With four rounds to be played after the BBL break, Victoria top the Shield ladder with Queensland third.

Australian Associated Press