Strikers back on top as Stars fail to dazzle
Travis Head's first 50 of the 2018 Big Bash League fired Adelaide Strikers back to the top of the table, while piling more misery on the hapless Melbourne Stars.
The Strikers showed no mercy for the struggling Stars as they cruised to an eight-wicket win on Tuesday with eight balls to spare at the Adelaide Oval.
It is now five defeats in a row for the Stars who are bottom of the pile, with their 151-6 never enough to halt the Head's charging Strikers, the hosts getting home thanks to Alex Carey's unbeaten 59.
He had a bit of luck, though, as Glenn Maxwell dropped him late on, but it would not have mattered with victory already in sight for the Strikers.
Fittingly it was Carey who finished things off, and he did so in style with a huge slog sweep off his legs that cleared the leg-side boundary to get the party started.
As has been their problem all season, the Stars failed to get a solid platform from which to build as Ben Dunk, Kevin Pietersen and Peter Handscomb all fell in single figures during the powerplay with only 34 runs on the board.
Maxwell and Marcus Stoinis did their best to steady the ship with 60 and 39 respectively, while Seb Gotch chipped in with 14.
Gotch and Maxwell shared 61 for the fifth wicket as the Stars finally got into three figures, before captain John Hastings bludgeoned 17 late on to give them a target to defend.
"I STILL HATE FIELDING"
As he closes in on BBL retirement, Pietersen's (very) brief cameo with the bat showed why it might be time for him to step away.
Another reason could be his lack of desire to get out in the field, as Channel Ten commentators found out while he was on player microphone.
"It's a case of saying I've had my time and I'd rather commit to other areas," he said. "I know somebody else will deserve the spot."
He quickly added "I still hate fielding" when the ball flew to him as he spoke.
HEAD FINDS HIS FEET
As he prepares to link up with Australia's one-day international side, Head showed he is in good nick with a quickfire half century, the Adelaide skipper rattling off 53 from 32 balls.
Head's big hitting took the game away from the Stars, the 24-year-old finding the boundary on five occasions and clearing it on a further three.
He took particular liking to Stoinis' bowling, hitting his international team-mate for two sixes – the latter a perfect way to bring up his half century.