After weeks of pulsating cricketing action, Brobdingnagian strokes, great bowling, humdingers, damp squibs and upsets, the semi-finalists are finally locked in for the 2019-20 edition of the rebel Women’s Big Bash League.
The last four group games of the tournament were played on Sunday where Brisbane Heat ensured they top the table and face the fourth-seeded Melbourne Renegades in the first semi-final, courtesy the former’s eight-wicket win over Melbourne Stars and the latter victory over Sydney Thunder.
Similarly, Perth Scorchers ensured they avenged Saturday’s loss against Hobart while Adelaide Strikers were in for a rude shock when they were beaten by Sydney Sixers by 13 runs.
Here’s the round-up of WBBL matches- 53, 54, 55 and 56:
Melbourne Renegades pulled off their second consecutive win and confirmed their place as one of the four semi-finalists of the 2019-20 Women Big Bash League.
Batting first, the Renegades got off to a worst possible start when they lost two quick wickets in quick time in the form of Ana Lanning and Chamari Athapaththu. At 2-6, the Melbourne-based franchise needed someone to hold the fort. And, once again it was skipper Jessica Duffin (53) and opener Danielle Wyatt (44).
The duo accumulated 72 runs for the third wicket in eight overs, eventually helping their side to post 6-151 after 20 overs. Samantha Bates (3-21) was the pick of the bowlers while Hannah Darlington (2-32) provided able support.
Chasing 152, Thunder got off to a steady start with Rachel Priest (19) and Naomi Stalenberg (28) putting up 25 runs for the first wicket before Molly Strano (3-26) wrecked their batting unit by claiming the wickets of Priest, Stalenberg, and skipper Rachael Haynes (14).
Sydney Sixers could never recover from the body blow and eventually finished with 7-122 after 20 overs. The Renegades will now lock horns with table-topper Brisbane Heat Women in the second semi-final on Saturday, December 07.
Alyssa Healy’s whirlwind 84 leaves Strikers reeling with a 13-run defeat
In the 54th match of the WBBL, table-toppers Adelaide Strikers came in for a huge shock when they were defeated by Sydney Sixers by 13 runs at the Hurstville Oval. Sydney Sixers came on the back of outstanding performance with the bat thanks to skipper Alyssa Healy’s whirlwind 38-ball 84; an innings which included seven fours and as many sixes. Healy was the cornerstone in Sixers’ posting an eventual match-winning total of 7-177.
Chasing 178, the Strikers lost the prized wicket of Suzie Bates for a second-ball duck and Tahlia McGrath for six. Sophie Devine carried on with her whirlwind form, scoring a 38-ball 60 while Bridget Patterson (30) and Lauren Winfield (20) made able contributions, but it still wasn’t enough as Stella Campbell (2-12) and Ashleigh Gardener (1-19) ensured Adelaide finish the league-stage at the second spot in the points table.
Another abject surrender by Melbourne Stars hand Brisbane Heat an eight-wicket and the top-spot
The 56th match of the WBBL saw yet another abject performance by the Melbourne Stars Women; one that consigned them to their 12th defeat of the tournament in what was a rain-reduced 10-over-a-side fixture. The Stars’ eight-wicket defeat at Junction Oval meant Brisbane Heat finished the group-stage as the leading side of the tournament.
It was another abject surrender by the Melbourne Stars batswomen; something that has become the norm as the tournament has progressed. Batting first, barring their openers- Lizelle Lee (16) and Elyse Villani (25)- none of the batters could register double-digit scores as Amelia Kerr (2-4) and Jess Jonassen (2-14) tightened the screws on their middle-order to ensure they finished with an under-par 6-87 after 10 overs.
Chasing 88 was never going to trouble a star-studded Brisbane Heat line-up. And, it didn’t. Beth Mooney scored an unbeaten 27-ball 50 while Laura Harris contributed with a 13-ball 21 as the Heat strolled past the target in a mere 8.4 overs.
Scorchers’ return the favour to Hobart with a clinical win
After having suffered a six-wicket loss on Saturday at the hands of Hobart Hurricanes, the Scorchers returned the favour with disdain thanks to a riveting 67-ball 101 from skipper Meg Lanning.
Batting first, Scorchers got off to a great start with Lanning (101) and Nicole Bolton (44) racked up 154 runs for the first wicket in 17.5 overs. Lanning was finally dismissed for 101 following which Perth suffered a mini-collapse of sorts, losing four wickets for the 13 runs and finished with 4-167 in 20 overs. Nicola Carey (2-25) and Chloe Tyron (1-24) were the standout bowlers for Hobart.
Chasing 168, the Hurricanes needed a Lanning-esque innings from one of their batswomen. But, all they got is batters getting their eye-in, scoring those beautiful looking 20s and 30s before throwing their wicket away. Each of Nicola Carey (26), Heather Knight (36), Fran Wilson (10) were guilty of the same error.
And, even though Corniee Hall (28*) and Maisy Gibson (18*) tried to address the fledging run-chase, it wasn’t enough as they fell well short of the target, finishing at 6-132. Taneale Peschel (2-22) and Samantha Betts (2-30) were the pick of the bowlers for the Scorchers.
Melbourne Renegades Women vs Sydney Thunder, Match 53
Melbourne Renegades: 6-151 in 20 overs (Jessica Duffin 53, Danielle Wyatt 44; Samantha Bates 3-21, Hannah Darlington 2-32)
Sydney Thunder: 7-123 in 20 overs (Rachel Priest 19, Naomi Stalenberg 28; Molly Strano 3-26, Georgia Wareham 1-20)
Result: Melbourne Renegades Women won by 29 runs
Sydney Sixers Women vs Adelaide Strikers Women, Match 54
Sydney Sixers: 7-177 in 20 overs (Alyssa Healy 84, Marizanne Kapp 24; Sarah Coyte 2-27, Megan Schutt 1-35)
Adelaide Strikers: 7-164 in 20 overs (Sophie Devine 60, Bridget Patterson 30; Stella Campbell 2-12, Ashleigh Gardener 1-19)
Result: Sydney Sixers Women won by 13 runs
Perth Scorchers Women vs Hobart Hurricanes Women, Match 55
Perth Scorchers: 4-167 in 20 overs (Meg Lanning 101, Nicole Bolton 44; Nicola Carey 2-25, Chloe Tyron 1-24)
Hobart Hurricanes: 4-113 in 15.4 overs (Corinne Hall 28*, Heather Knight 36; Taneale Peschel 2-22, Heather Graham 1-23)
Result: Perth Scorchers Women won by 35 runs
Melbourne Stars Women vs Brisbane Heat Women, Match 56
Melbourne Stars: 6-87 in 20 overs (Elyse Villani 25, Lizelle Lee 16; Amelia Kerr 2-4, Jess Jonassen 2-14
Brisbane Heat: 2-88 in 8.4 overs (Beth Mooney 50*, Laura Harris 21; Annabel Sutherland 1-14, Holly Ferling 1-21)
Result: Brisbane Heat Women by 8 wickets
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