CRICKET: Joe Burns has declared the purge in Hobart won't mark the end of his Test career.
The mentally tough opener is building an imposing case to suggest better days are ahead with match-saving knocks of 108 and 88 not out for Queensland at the SCG piloting him to the top of the Sheffield Shield run-scorers list.
Despite the draw, NSW has managed to edge up to second on the Shield ladder, with the Bulls now fourth.
But Burns and Chris Hartley (86 not out) showed enormous character to come out and save the game, after Blues skipper Moises Henriques smashed a colossal 265 before declaring the NSW first innings at 6-603.
Burns was one of five players axed after Australia's summer reached rock bottom against South Africa in November, marking the second time in three months the 27-year-old had been dropped from the Test side.
But like NSW gloveman Peter Nevill (143 not out), Burns has responded from the disaster with renewed vigour.
With three Test centuries to his name and two hundreds and 601 runs for Queensland already this summer, Burns is refusing to give up and is determined to knock down the selectors' door for a third time.
"I guess I've made three Test hundreds so I'm really confident that if I can get back there in form making runs and if there's a spot in the side, I can have success at that level," Burns told The Daily Telegraph.
"I love playing for my country, representing the Australian people, there's nothing better.
"You have to earn the right to play for your country. You earn the right by making as many runs for your state in the Sheffield Shield, and that's my job now. I'm just enjoying that challenge.
"I'm confident I've got the game to have success. I'm just trying to make sure I'm at the top of my game.
"On the back of having success at the international level, it gives you confidence and trust in the things you do."
Queensland was forced to spend two full days in the excruciating Sydney heatwave before being sent out to bat.
However, stand-in skipper Burns led from the front to show why he's regarded as one of the mentally toughest players in Australia.
"It's about going back and showing that ruthlessness at the state level," he said.
"I'm leading run scorer in the comp so I'm very satisfied with how I'm going just have to maintain that and just keep going."
Burns had a strong season in the Big Bash for the Brisbane Heat and is hopeful of breaking into the IPL for the first time when he goes to auction later this month.