The Sixers plundered 125 off their last 10 overs following a superb opening spell from Dan Worrall
A blistering 15-ball half-century by Dan Christian, the second-fastest in BBL history, transformed a sluggish Sydney Sixers innings into a total that proved comfortably match-winning against an Adelaide Strikers side who let things slip away twice in the game.
Dan Worrall produced a superb spell of 2 for 12 as the Sixers were held to 2 for 52 in the first half of their innings, but the second ten overs were plundered for 125. The Strikers made the decision to sub out Danny Briggs for the second time this season, bringing in allrounder Liam Scott but he went for 28 in two overs and then made 10 off 12 deliveries.
The Strikers’ reply started well with an opening stand of 52 in 4.3 overs, but the innings fell away sharply as offspinner Ben Manenti bowled economically and claimed two key wickets. However, the early fine work of Worrall and the rapid launch to the chase meant that the Strikers were able to claim the Bash Boost point inside five overs.
Worrall’s new-ball wobble
For significant portions of Worrall’s four overs the Sixers batsmen couldn’t lay a bat on him. The 18 dot balls he sent down were the most in his BBL career. Seeing him going so well, he was given his four overs on the bounce by captain Alex Carey and it was the key part in keeping the Sixers to 2 for 52 in 10 overs. He beat Josh Philippe three times in the opening over and was rewarded with his wicket when the opener tried to invent a scoop and was given caught behind off a glove, although Philippe didn’t look impressed. He continued to nip the ball past the edge of Jack Edwards and James Vince, removing the former when Edwards got a thick nick to Carey.
Having limped to 3 for 61 in 12 overs, the Sixers’ innings was changed in a flash by a display of wonderful striking from Christian. He took 22 off the second over from Scott and then Rashid Khan, having been held back until the 10th over, was taken for 16. Three boundaries in the next over against Wes Agar (the first of the Power Surge) took Christian to his 15-ball half-century, second only to Chris Gayle’s 12-ball effort in BBL history. Christian, however, fell the next delivery. A couple of reasonably quiet overs followed, but Jordan Silk, Daniel Hughes and Jason Holder – launching his first delivery in the BBL for six – all struck useful blows.
Manenti halts the Strikers
Phil Salt and Jake Weatherald provided a flying start to the chase with the most productive four-over powerplay (47) of the season so far with Holder’s second over costing 18. Christian made the breakthrough when Salt got an inside edge into his pad which carried to the wicketkeeper, but it was Manenti’s last three overs (after his first cost 13) that really halted the chase. He had Weatherald caught at deep point and then Matt Renshaw taken from a revere sweep as he claimed 2 for 10 in his second spell.
Long way short
At the midway point of the chase the Strikers had a chance, needing 102 from 60 balls and the Power Surge up their sleeve, but they were severely set back when Carlos Brathwaite nipped one through Carey with his first delivery. Steve O’Keefe also struck in his first over as things quickly got away from the Strikers and the Surge produced just 16 from the two overs. The second of those was bowled by Christian, using the round-the-wicket line and expertly cramping the batsmen for room to cap an outstanding personal performance.
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