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Two Wins From Two Sees Thunder Top Big Bash Table

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The Big Bash League (BBL05) started on Thursday, with the Perch Scorchers coming in as defending Champions. They will be looking for their third straight title, after winning BBL03 and BBL04. Last year’s final against the Sydney Sixers went down to the final ball as Brett Lee lost out with his final ball in professional cricket. The Scorchers carried on their run of reaching the final in every tournament played to date.

This year, the same eight teams come into the tournament, with five teams still looking for their first Big Bash title. Only the Sydney Sixers (BBL01), Brisbane Heat (BBL02) and the Perth Scorchers (BBL03, BBL04) have won the trophy. The Sixers would start the season off against their inter-city rivals, the Sydney Thunder.


Game 1 – Thursday 17 December

Sydney Thunder – 158/4 (20) – M Hussey 80*, Rohrer 30 – Lawford 1-12, Lyon 1-28

Sydney Sixers – 122 (19.5) – Lumb 34 – Russell 3-13, Watson 3-13, McKay 2-11

Sydney Thunder win by 36 runs.

Mike Hussey was the star of the show for Thunder, with an unbeaten 80 from just 59 balls, as they set the Sixers an unassailable target. However, Hussey made the most of his second chance, after Michael Lumb dropped a catch that would have gotten rid of the Aussie batsman. Alongside the captain, Ben Rohrer hit 30 off 20 as the Thunder pushed on to 158/4 off their 20 overs.

The Sixers got off to a good start with Michael Lumb hitting a quick 34, but after him, only two players reached double figures, as both Shane Watson and Andre Russell took three wickets. The target got too much for the Sixers at the end, who were all out on the penultimate ball, for just 122.


Game 2 – Friday 18 December

Adelaide Strikers – 187/5 (20) – Ross 65, Hodge 56* – Boland 2-55, Faulkner 1-21

Melbourne Stars – 168/7 (20) – Stoinis 50, D Hussey 25 – Richardson 3-22, Rashid 2-27

Adelaide Strikers win by 19 runs.

Adelaide won this match after posting a frightening total of 187 in their 20 overs. They started badly, falling to 38-3 when Mahela Jayawardene was caught behind for just 5. After that, a 115 run partnership between Brad Hodge (56*) and Alex Ross (65) got the Strikers to an impressive total.

It was one the Stars were always struggling to reach, despite Marcus Stoinis opening the batting with a 50. Kevin Pietersen, Glenn Maxwell and David Hussey all got in before getting out, with no-one providing the killer blows to get the Stars to the target required. Kane Richardson (not the NZ’er) was the star with the ball, taking 3-22 in his four overs.


Game 3 – Saturday 19 December

Brisbane Heat – 180/5 (20) – Lynn 35, Cutting 30* – Doherty 2-29, Bravo 1-30

Melbourne Renegades – 184/3 (19.3) – Finch 65, White 55 – Fekete 2-44, Steketee 1-40

Melbourne Renegades win by seven wickets.

Saturday saw the first victory for the team batting second in this year’s Big Bash League, as the Renegades successfully chased down 181 to win their first game of the competition. Chris Lynn, the Heat captain, Ben Cutting and James Hopes had put Brisbane in a commanding position, all scoring at around two runs a ball to get the Heat up to a total of 180 in their 20 overs.

However, some hard hitting from Aaron Finch and Cameron White, along with 22 from just 9 deliveries at the end from Dwayne Bravo, got the Renegades over the line with three balls remaining. All but one of the Brisbane bowlers went for at least nine an over, proving that it was definitely a night for the bat.


Game 4 – Sunday 20 December

Sydney Sixers – 186/7 (20) – Haddin 72, Silk 41 – Boyce 2-25, Tait 2-33

Hobart Hurricanes – 91 (15.5) – Bailey 62* – Lyon 5-23, O’Keefe 2-17

Sydney Sixers win by 95 runs.

Brad Haddin was the star of the first innings, with a fantastic 72 off just 45 balls for the Sixers. He opened the batting, and was joined at the crease by Jordan Silk when they went 3 down. The latter pushed on to 41, with Shaun Tait and Cameron Boyce taking two wickets apiece. The Sixers went on to reach 186, an imposing total for the Hurricanes to chase down.

However, Nathan Lyon had something to do with that, taking 5 wickets in 23 deliveries. He ripped apart the Hurricanes’ batting order, one in which the extras column was the second highest scorer. George Bailey batted out with 62* from 45 deliveries, but he had no help from his teammates. A great team performance gave the Sixers their first victory of the tournament.


Game 5 – Sunday 20 December

Sydney Thunder – 178/6 (20) – Khawaja 109*, Russell 22 – Maxwell 2-28, Hastings 2-32

Melbourne Renegades – 177/5 (20) – Pietersen 76, Faulkner 45* – Russell 2-28, McKay 1-27

Sydney Thunder win by 1 run.

The second game of the day saw Usman Khawaja put on a splendid display with the bat. He batted for the whole 20 overs of the Thunder’s innings, finishing unbeaten on 109. A 22-run cameo from Andre Russell helped the Thunder to 178, with both Glenn Maxwell and John Hastings taking two wickets.

The Renegades chase started badly, with Andre Russell showing his worth with the ball, dismissing both opening batsmen. KP then came to the crease, and hit 76 from 42 to give his side a chance. However, two quick wickets (Maxwell 2, Hussey 0) put a dint in their challenge and an unbeaten 45 at the end from Faulkner was not enough, with the Renegades falling short by a single run.


Points Table:

(Team – Played, Points)

Thunder – 2, 4

Sixers – 2, 2

Strikers – 1, 2

Renegades – 1, 2

Scorchers – 0, 0

Heat – 1, 0

Stars – 2, 0

Hurricanes – 1, 0

Adelaide Strikers BBL05 big bash Brisbane Heat Hobart Hurrianes Melbourne Renegades Melbourne Stars Perth Scorchers Sydney Sixers Sydney Thunder

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