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Sydney Thunder stuns Hobart Hurricanes to go top of the points table

Sydney Thunder stuns Hobart Hurricanes to go top of the
  • Sydney Thunder defeated Hobart Hurricanes by 39 runs on Thursday.

  • Usman Khawaja played an excellent knock of 49 off 33 balls.

In the 31st match of the ongoing Big Bash League (BBL) 2020-21, Sydney Thunder crushed Hobart Hurricanes by 39 runs at Optus Stadium on Thursday. The victory pushed Thunder to occupy the top spot in the points table.

Chasing 168, Hurricanes lost the first wicket in the form of D Arcy Short (19) for just 36 runs in the fifth over. Ben McDermott (22) was removed in the next over. Nathan McAndrew took both the wickets.

Dawid Malan (20) and Hurricanes skipper Peter Handscomb (30) tried to stabilize the innings by adding a vital 48-run stand for the third wicket before Chris Green cleaned up Malan in the 12th over.

Malan’s dismissal followed a batting collapse as Hurricanes, who were struggling on 91/3 after 11.4 overs, lost five more wickets at regular intervals to reach only 128/8 in 20 overs, losing the contest by 39 runs.

Khawaja, Ross guide Thunder to 167/5

Earlier, Usman Khawaja and Alex Ross played crucial knocks for Thunder to get them at a competitive score of 167/5 in their allotted 20 overs.

Thunder’s openers Khawaja (49 off 33 balls) and Alex Hales (21 off 19) took their side off to a flier, combining a 59-run opening stand inside seven overs. The partnership was broken by Short when he dismissed Hales for 21.

Short did not just stop there and continued the momentum by taking two more scalps of Khawaja and Sam Billings (1). In the meantime, spinner Sandeep Lamichhane also joined the party as he sent Thunder skipper Callum Ferguson (1) back into the dugout.

The back-to-back blows put brakes on run flow of Thunder as they scored 117/5 after 16 overs. But then the unthinkable happened, and Thunder did a phenomenal comeback thanks to quickfire knocks by Ross (44no off 33 balls) and Ben Cutting (31no off 14 balls). The pair added 57 runs for the sixth wicket to take team’s total to 167/5.

For Hurricanes, Short was the most successful bowler with three wickets for 26 in his quota of 4 overs. Apart from Short, leggie Lamichhane also picked up a scalp.

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