At the Etihad Stadium in Melbourne, the stage was set for the derby as the Melbourne Renegades and Melbourne Stars locked horns in a crucial encounter. The Stars couldn’t afford to slip up as they were tottering way down at number seven in the league table. They didn’t do any harm to their campaign, though, as they scampered their way to a hefty win by 46 runs.
After losing the toss, the Stars were sent in to bat and it panned out to be a blessing in disguise for the Men in Green. Aided by scintillating displays of power-hitting by Kevin Pietersen, Rob Quiney and David Hussey, the Stars piled on runs at will and set the Renegades a target of 201. Aaron Finch’s flurry of boundaries spurred hopes for the Renegades, but spinners and some efficient out-fielding sealed the game for the Stars.
|Kevin Pietersen||73(46)||James Pattinson||3/44|
|Robert Quiney||51(30)||Sunil Narine||1/37|
|David Hussey||27(11)||Trent Lawford||1/16|
|Total: 200/7 (20 overs)|
|Cameron White||38(29)||Adam Zampa||3/19|
|Aaron Finch||27(13)||Michael Beer||3/32|
|Chris Tremain||27(17)||Scott Boland||2/36|
|Total: 154/9 (20 overs)|
Melbourne Stars beat Melbourne Renegades by 46 runs
We take a look at five intriguing moments from the contest.
#1 Stars break free
The Melbourne Stars crept along in the initial couple of overs to add ten runs but they lost the wicket of Luke Wright. In his previous four overs during the power-plays, Tom Cooper had tied the batsmen down and it wasn’t any different this time around.
Nevertheless, it required a moment of inspiration for the Stars to set things rolling. Kevin Pietersen took the attack to Cooper and swept him for a six over square leg off his very first ball, which was succeeded by another maximum, this time by Rob Quiney.
The over fetched nineteen runs and it changed the complexion of the game as the Stars muscled their way to 58/1 at the end of six overs. Sunil Narine had gone for two boundaries in the previous 16 overs he bowled in the tournament but even he wasn’t spared as Quiney creamed a couple of boundaries off him.
#4 Callum Ferguson's screamer
The Melbourne Renegades had very little to cheer in their bowling tenure. Runs leaked at an alarming rate as Glenn Maxwell and Kevin Pietersen took them to the sword. Boundaries were peppered and the pair slaughtered their way to 65 runs in 35 balls.
Something had to give for the Stars to halt the carnage and it came through some spectacular display of work in the outfield. Both Maxwell and Pietersen successfully lived by the sword, but Maxi ran out of luck as he succumbed to an awe-inspiring catch at deep extra-cover.
Maxwell gave himself room on the leg side to play the inside-out shot, but didn’t get it out of the screws. Ferguson came running in from sweeper cover, dived full length and pulled off one of the best takes in this season’s Big Bash League.
#3 David Hussey’s counterpunch
Kevin Pietersen butchered the Renegades bowlers to plunder 73 runs off 46 balls, but fell prey to Sunil Narine in the eighteenth over, spooning a sitter to Chris Tremain inside the circle. Pietersen's dismissal gave a sniff of hope to the Renegades, but David Hussey carried forward KP’s good work in a cameo to propel the total to 200.
Hussey pressed his foot to the accelerator from the word go and cranked up 19 runs in his first five balls. Complimenting ferocious hitting with deft touches, Hussey powered his way to 26 runs from 10 balls. He went downtown, opened the face and used the bottom hand with expertise.
#2 Scott Boland’s double strike
With an asking rate of 10 from the outset, the Renegades opened with Sunil Narine and Aaron Finch and they kept with the rate, racing away to 30 in the first three overs. Finch threatened to take his team off to a flier through some muscular hoicks, powering to 27 runs off 13 balls.
Nonetheless, Scott Boland’s opening over shifted the momentum in favour of the Stars. Albeit he went for 12 runs, he first got rid of Narine and then sent Finch back to the hut, much to the relief of the Stars. Narine’s dismissal wouldn’t have mattered much, but Finch was a body blow for the Renegades.
After that the runs dried down as the Renegades could only eke out 66 in the next nine overs. Meanwhile, the required rate jumped up to 11.18 and the Renegades were in dire straits as they had lost half their side in the process.
#1 Catching drill on the boundary
The Renegades batsmen went for the shots, but kept holing out to fielders in the deep as nothing seemed to fall in place for them.
The more shots they played, the deeper they dragged themselves into the hole and never looked in the hunt for tracking down the target. It was catching practice for the men patrolling the boundaries as Glenn Maxwell displayed his prowess as a safe catcher by pocketing three catches.
Though he dropped a sitter off his own bowling, he performed well enough to seize victory for the Melbourne Stars to move them three places up to number four. Apart from Maxwell, James Faulkner and Ben Hilfenhaus also clutched on to two catches.