Impressive Sixers win BBL thriller against Strikers
Josh Philippe thumped an unbeaten 83 from 52 balls as Sydney Sixers continued their excellent Big Bash League campaign with a thrilling seven-wicket victory over Adelaide Strikers at Coffs Harbour.
The Sixers, beaten semi-finalists last season, made it five wins from seven outings, after limiting the Strikers to 176-6 and chasing down the target with three balls to spare.
Adelaide failed to fully capitalise on a promising start, having been 53-1 after five overs, with Josh Hazlewood's miserly spell proving pivotal.
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Philippe then starred with the bat, while Justin Avendano (47) also caught the eye, and Tom Curran finished the job in style in a match that saw a comical dismissal for Matthew Short.
WHAT A NIGHT IN COFFS HARBOUR! #smashemsixers #BBL09 pic.twitter.com/Un0QgHjveO — Sydney Sixers (@SixersBBL) January 5, 2020
HAZLEWOOD HALTS STRIKERS
Adelaide looked well placed to make a big score after a fast start but Hazlewood had other ideas.
Despite taking only one wicket – that of Strikers captain Alex Carey (29) – his four-over spell was key as he conceded just 18 runs.
That stood in stark contrast to the economy rates of three of his fellow bowlers, with Ben Dwarshuis, Lloyd Pope and Curran all in double figures.
SHORT'S SHORT INNINGS ENDS IN COMEDY OF ERRORS
The 14th over of the Strikers' innings saw two wickets fall, with one playing out in the manner of a slapstick comedy.
After Cameron White had holed out on 18 while in search of a six, Short followed him back to the pavilion without facing a ball.
Standing at the non-striker's end as Jonathan Wells flicked a stroke towards square leg, Short saw an opportunity for two runs, then changed his mind... then changed it again when there was a misfield.
By the time he changed his mind for a third time he was halfway down the pitch and he was then short of his ground when he was run out, even though wicketkeeper Philippe appeared to lose his grip on the ball as he whipped off the bails.
What Wells, who finished 40 not out in a losing effort, must have made of all this as he stood safely in his crease is anyone's guess.
A lot going on here #BBL09 pic.twitter.com/ee7hHUTTB8 — KFC Big Bash League (@BBL) January 5, 2020
PHILIPPE CUTS LOOSE
Philippe was aggressive from the outset in a 52-ball knock that yielded five fours and four sixes.
Avendano joined him for a 72-run opening partnership that put the Sixers firmly on course, but the best strike rate belonged to Curran.
Coming in late and with a job still to be done, Curran faced just three balls but scored 10 runs, sealing the win with a six.