THE Queensland Bulls are within striking distance of a second straight Ryobi Cup final, their impressive all-round performance yesterday ensuring a five-wicket win over New South Wales at North Sydney Oval.
Captain James Hopes led the way with a man-of-the-match display in his 100th game for the Bulls.
They completed the win despite a hard-hitting 139 from NSW opener David Warner.
The loss of Warner's wicket triggered a collapse of 7-39 as NSW finished all out on 253.
Hopes picked up 4-8 from 7.2 overs, and Ben Cutting and Michael Neser claimed two wickets each.
In reply, debutant Jim Peirson (52) and Usman Khawaja (63) added 118 for the first wicket before the Bulls lost 4-12.
Chris Lynn and Jason Floros (38) repaired the damage with a partnership of 118 for the fifth wicket.
Lynn remained 78 not out, but it was Hopes who fittingly hit the winning runs with six overs in hand.
In yesterday's other game, 101 from Tom Cooper and 91 from Michael Klinger led the Redbacks to a six-wicket win over the Warriors.
The pair put on 188 for the second wicket as South Australia chased down WA's total of 5-285 with nine balls remaining. The loss leaves the Warriors winless.
Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.