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BBL 11 | Pattinson’s brilliant last over, Zahir Khan’s amazing spell catalyst in thrilling Renegades win

James Pattinson, the fast bowler once regarded as a pure class made for Test cricket, delivered with the ball in the shortest format fr his team Melbourne Renegades. The Gades who finished last year at the bottom of the table got off to a winning start as they defeated Adelaide Strikers by two runs in a thrilling last over encounter at their home ground of Docklands. 

Pattinson, who was given the duty to defend nine off the last over bowled a brilliant one in which he did not concede any boundary and also removed Wes Agar. He gave away only six runs that came from three doubles on the last three balls, thereby winning the game for his team.  

Prior to Pattinson, Kane Richardson, the stand-in captain in place of Aaron Finch who missed this game due to injury, also bowled a good 19th over. He did it in a crunch too after English import Reece Topley had given away 15 in the 18th over to bring the equation down to 18 from the last two. Richardson got the wicket of dangerous-looking Daniel Worral and had given way just five runs before a boundary of the last ball made the match really interesting. 

The Strikers would not have been in such difficult conditions if they had converted a brilliant start. Matthew Short and Jake Weatherlad had taken the Strikers to 45 without loss in the first five overs. However, Zahir Khan planned differently and removed both the players in quick succession. The wicket of Weatherland though was more of fielder Jake Fraser-McGurk who caught a blinder at the boundary line. 

Harry Nielsen tried building partnerships with Jonny Wells and Ryan Gibson. While the former was removed by Zahir as his third scalp, Gibson was retired hurt after an ankle injury. Soon Nielsen was caught out off the bowling of Will Sutherland and Daniel Drew, who was playing his debut BBL game was left to try and win it for the Strikers with the tail. 

Rashid Khan tried to support him with a quickfire 11, but it wasn't enough as Drew himself wasn’t able to clear the field as frequently as was required. 

Earlier in the evening, after winning the toss and deciding to bat first, Renegades got off to a great start courtesy of Mackenzie Harvey and Sam Harper. The openers added 65 in only 8.4 overs before the stand was broken. While Harper made 33, Harvey went on to bring up his fifty and was supported well by James Seymour who made 23 off 14 balls. But after the fall of these three batters, the men in red lost the plot. 

None among the late hitters in Mohammad Nabi, Sutherland and Jonathan Merlo could build on to the platform given to them by the top order. In fact, Renegades lost six wickets in the last three overs and could make only 14 runs. If they had lost this game, those last three overs would have haunted them for sure. 

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