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BBL 2016/17: 5 best moments from the Melbourne Renegades vs Perth Scorchers last ball thriller

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 29:  Andrew Tye of the Perth Scorchers celebrates with team mates the wicket of Aaron Finch of the Melbourne Renegades during the Big Bash League match between the Melbourne Renegades and Perth Scorchers at Etihad Stadium on December 29, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)
Aaron Finch looked in fine form until he gifted his wicket away
Saransh Shenoy

Perth Scorchers got back to winning ways with their second win of the season and joined the Brisbane Heat and Sydney Sixers at the top of the table with 4 points, after narrowly emerging on the right side of a last ball thriller against the Melbourne Renegades.

Opting to field first, the visiting team’s bowling conceded the early momentum to the Renegades batsmen before pulling things back and restricting them to 148. Despite not having as many runs on the board as they would have desired, disciplined bowling from the Renegades bowling ensured that the Scorchers went the distance to earn their win.Brief Scores: Melbourne Renegades – 148/8 (Cameron White 37(29), Callum Ferguson 28(21); David Willey 2/15(3), Ashton Turner 2/25(4));Perth Scorchers – 152/6 (Michael Klinger 72(55), Mitchell Marsh 34(22); Sunil Narine 2/20(4));


#5 Finch’s soft dismissal against the run of play

After Perth Scorchers won the toss and opted to field, Melbourne Renegades got off to a flying start, scoring 36 from the first 4 overs. Finch, in particular, looked in great touch, repeatedly crunching the Scorchers’ pacers for boundaries between the cover and mid-off region. He had raced away to 24 when Andrew Tye was introduced into the attack.

The Scorchers bowler, who varied his pace impressively the other night, unleashed his wicket-taking knuckle ball once again as Finch spooned a catch, ironically, to the fielder at short cover. With Finch starting fluently, Renegades would have hoped to post a huge score but with his stay cut short by this tame dismissal, Scorchers were allowed to claw their way back into the game.

#4 Cameron and Callum rebuild

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 29:  Cameron White of the Melbourne Renegades bats during the Big Bash League match between the Melbourne Renegades and Perth Scorchers at Etihad Stadium on December 29, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)
Cameron White top-scored for the Renegades and shared a crucial partnership with Callum Ferguson

With Finch’s dismissal, the run rate dipped. His opening partner Marcus Harris departed soon after, trying to sweep Ashton Turner over the deep mid-wicket fence. With further hiccups to be avoided, Aussie internationals Cameron White and Callum Ferguson joined hands to rebuild the innings and stitched together a crucial 50-run stand for the 3rd wicket.

White top-scored for the Renegades with a 29-ball 37. The pair were separated when an attempted slog-sweep from White landed safely in the hands of David Willey at deep mid-wicket. After hitting back-to-back boundaries, Ferguson too departed in the next over, falling to a slower delivery from Mitchell Marsh.

#3 Narine and Hogg bowl in tandem, dry up runs

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 29:  Sunil Narine of the Melbourne Renegades  celebrates taking the wicket of Shaun Marsh of the Perth Scorchers during the Big Bash League match between the Melbourne Renegades and Perth Scorchers at Etihad Stadium on December 29, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)
Narine bowled a miserly spell and finished with figures of 2/20, picking the key wickets of Shaun Marsh and Klinger

With just below 150 to defend, any team would love to have someone who could dry up runs and build pressure on the batsmen. Renegades had not one, but two.

Two of the best spinners in the T20 format, Sunil Narine and Brad Hogg, ply their trade together for the Melbourne Renegades. Though Hogg was not among the wickets, Narine broke through with the crucial wicket of Shaun Marsh off just the second ball of his spell. Bowling in tandem through the middle overs, the duo also kept runs at check, the run rate even dipping below 6.5 on occasions when they bowled in tandem.

#2 Bravo suffers fielding mishap, blow for Renegades

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 29:  Dwayne Bravo of the Melbourne Renegades is taken from the ground on a stretcher after injuring himself in the field during the Big Bash League match between the Melbourne Renegades and Perth Scorchers at Etihad Stadium on December 29, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)
Bravo’s absence was a huge blow to the Renegades’ chances

In the 11th over of Scorchers’ innings, Klinger struck a short pitched delivery from Hogg towards the point boundary. Running a long way from deep extra cover, Bravo put in a valiant attempt to save the boundary but ended up landing on his shoulder as well as pulling his hamstring.

Though he did manage to save two runs on that occasion, it was a body blow for the Renegades, who would have banked on his expertise as a death over specialist when things went down to the wire.

Finch filled in for Bravo’s overs and picked up the key wicket of Mitchell Marsh but one wonders whether it would have been a different script for the Renegades had Bravo been on the field.

#1 The wobble, Finch’s double strike and the anti-climax - Agar’s last ball steal

Big Bash League - Renegades v Scorchers : News Photo
Ashton Agar celebrates after stealing victory with a last-ball six

With Narine and Hogg pegging back the Scorchers’ run rate in the middle overs, a seemingly easy chase had come down to 19 required off the last 3 overs – a scenario which could go either way with one good over for either team.

However, with well-set Klinger and Mitchell Marsh at the crease, the Scorchers would have been expected to sail through, unless they wobbled under pressure. But that’s exactly how it panned out.

Klinger was the first to depart, giving a return catch to Narine. Turner followed, chasing a very wide delivery from Rimmington. With Bravo off the field, the captain Finch decided to take the responsibility upon himself. The equation read – 9 required off 6 balls.

Marsh scampered through for two runs off the first ball. 7 required off 5 balls. Marsh dragged a rank, low full toss from Finch that should have been dispatched to the stands for a six into the hands of the long-on fielder.

The next ball, Adam Voges edged the ball towards Finch while trying to flick it to the leg side for a couple, only to find himself run out by a fair distance by a direct hit from Finch. Finch ran, picked up the ball and threw directly even as Voges watched in disbelief.

Incoming batsman Ashton Agar picked the next two balls from Finch for a couple of runs each through the deep mid-wicket region. With 3 required off the last ball and whispers of a Super Over growing loud, Finch delivered a full toss again but this time, Agar swung the ball straight over the same deep mid-wicket region and broke into celebrations.

Edited by Staff Editor

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