Memorable Match: 1998/99 Shield final

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Former Western Australian Captain Tom Moody casts an eye over Western Australia's back-to-back Shield Final win in 1998/1999 against Queensland.

The fourth consecutive entry into the Shield final for Western Australia would present one of the great cricket challenges in 1999: to become the first team to win a Sheffield Shield final away from home.

Unlike in the previous year, the Western Australian road to the final was not clear cut, having to defeat Victoria in the final round in order to secure a place. The narrow victory against a strong Bushranger line-up buoyed the Warriors into the showdown against a Queensland team boasting Mathew Hayden, Andrew Symonds, Stuart Law and Michael Kasprowicz.

Western Australian Captain Tom Moody recalls how it was the desire to become the first away team to win, rather than the back-to-back title which motivated his team.

"From our perspective, we were very aware that no team had won a Shield final away from home, so we knew were up against it," Moody said.

The game would be marred by consistent rain delays and overcast conditions, of which Moody took advantage of on Day 1.

"We knew obviously that to win, we needed to take twenty wickets, so we were pleased to get first use of the pitch, ball and the [overcast] overhead conditions."

"As it turned out, it was the right decision [to bowl first] and take advantage of the conditions early on."

While the Warriors bowling attack was formidable; Jo Angel, Brendan Julian and Moody to say the least, it was an unlikely hero with the ball which turned the game in favour of the Western Australia on Day 1.

"[Damien Martyn] bowled these little medium pacers and could swing it around a bit," Moody said.

"I threw him the ball for a real change up from our regular attack. We had four front line quicks and Marto was a real part -time option."

"[He] was significant, he sort of was the unexpected star with the ball, but we all knew what he was capable of doing with the bat,".

Martyn's career best figures of 4/30 would be the key spell of the Queensland innings, which was held together admirably by Symonds, who blasted 113 (116) out of 265 all out.

In a perilous position at 2-13, it would be Martyn and Simon Katich who would guide the Warriors to 2-147 at lunch, where a rain delay finished the Day 2 play.

Martyn would finish with 85 to go with his four wickets in the first innings, while Katich would score a fourth hundred for the season, reaching 115.

"It was fitting for Kat to get a hundred in the final on the back of his season; he had a monster year at the top of the order for us," Moody said.

"It was a typical Katto innings, which showed great character, great fight and determination."

"He was the backbone of that first innings, to give us that big total on the back of their first innings."

While comfortably in front, tail-ender Julian would smash 85 off 70 balls to put a significant lead on the Bulls, before helping rout the home side early on Day 4.

Julian would take two wickets in Queensland's 2nd innings; with Angel (3/20), Moody (3/36) and Martyn again (1/2) bowling out the Bulls for just 129.

Moody was ecstatic that his team was able to get the win, despite history being against them.

"It meant a lot [to win], not so much from a back-to-back point of view, but to be the first team to win a shield final away from home against a very tough opponent".

"We had enormous respect for Queensland, you only have to look down the list to recognise the significance of their side."

1998/99 remains the most recent of Shield wins for Western Australia, while for the Queensland, the following seasons would be the continuation of a dominant era. They would make the next seven shield finals, winning the next three on the trot.