St George and Sutherland were required to dig in with the bat on day one of their two-day, round 13 fixtures on Saturday.
With their finals hopes all but over, Saints and the Sharks were playing for pride with three rounds of the NSW Premier Cricket season remaining.
At Joe McAleer Park, Sutherland (14th) took on Blacktown looking to snap a four-match losing streak that has seen them slip from sixth on the table after their win over St George on December 22.
Having not won a match since the Christmas break, Sharks captain Chris Williams won the toss and elected to bat but a steady flow of wickets saw Sutherland looking at making another disappointing total.
At 8-188, No.10 batsman Jake Wilson joined young leg spinner Daniel Fallins at the crease.
The pair managed to put on 96 for the ninth wicket, with NSW Sheffield Shield representative Fallins eventually dismissed for 56.
Fallins faced 143 balls, showing impressive discipline with the bat as Wilson finished top scorer on 58 not out.
Earlier, Jamie Brown had made 54 to hold the Sutherland innings together.
Sutherland were able to bat out the day, finishing at 9-294.
Gurinderjeet Hara was the star with the ball for the hosts, taking 6-70 including the wickets of Sutherland openers Williams (27) and Jarryd Biviano (5) as well as Fallins, Brown and Austin Waugh (8).
At Raby Oval, St George captain Nick Stapleton won the toss and elected to bat against Campbelltown-Camden but Saints were in early trouble at 2-29 after losing openers Mitch Gray (17) and Matt Hopkins (2).
It was Stapleton who again steadied the ship. The young all-rounder joined Blake Macdonald in a 110-run partnership for the third wicket before Macdonald was trapped leg before wicket for 70.
Stapleton continued on, showing great patience and maturity in facing 197 deliveries. He was eventually dismissed for 72 but had done enough to help Saints into a decent position on a day that was difficult for scoring.
Jonathan Rose (23 not out) and Tom Engelbrecht (39 not out) put on an unbeaten 62 for the seventh wicket to help St George to 6-252 at the close of play.
Iain Carlisle was the best with the ball for the hosts, taking 3-42. Tanveer Sangha dismissed Stapleton and Macdonald to finish with 2-99.
Play on day two resumes at 10.30am on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Sutherland’s Steve Smith is unlikely to be fit for the Pakistan series when his suspension for his role in Australia’s ball-tampering scandal ends on March 28, with the former Australia captain still in a brace until the end of the month after major elbow surgery.
The Sydney Morning Herald reported Smith remains in the frame to return in time for the World Cup in May, although he is keen to play in the Indian Premier League, which also resumes on March 29.