Mayank Kumar ∙ Dec 31 2020, 12:38 PM

Strikers vs Scorchers: Clinical Perth register first win of BBL 10 against toothless Adelaide

In a battle between two sides on the middle and lower half of the points table, the Perth Scorchers defeated the Adelaide Strikers by 7 wickets at the Adelaide Oval on Friday, December 31 to open their winning account in the ongoing Big Bash League.

With the help of this win against the Strikers, the Scorchers have gone up to the sixth position on the points table of the league with eight teams, while the Strikers are holding forth on the fourth position with three wins and three losses in their six matches this season.

Chasing a modest target of 147 runs, the Scorchers were powered off to a rapid start on the back of Jason Roy who went on to score a 32-ball-49 and followed by finishing efforts from the bats of Micthell Marsh and Josh Inglis. Marsh remained unbeaten on 24-ball-38 while Inglis carried his bat with 44 not out to help the Scorchers register their first win. 

Roy was in exquisite form from the very first over off Daniel Worral and made his intention clear that the required rate of almost seven runs per over doesn't necessarily mean he will take his time to settle down. Coming to bowl from the other end, Peter Siddle was treated with the same disdain, but the pacer managed to get hold off Roy and ended up conceding only five runs.

The gap between Roy and his opening partner Liam Livingstone was growing wider and wider as Roy put Worral to the sword in his next over, taking 11 runs off him. 

At the end of the mandatory powerplay, Scorchers were well on their way to chase 147 runs, but Carey had his main weapon—Rashid Khan up his sleeve and he was brought into the attack right after the field restriction. Roy wasn’t to be disturbed one bit and reverse swept Rashid on his first ball to send a signal to the Strikers’ camp that the run chase was well and truly on, that too at a more rapid pace than required. Worral was again treated with disdain in the next over and by the end of seven overs, Scorchers had piled more than 50 runs without losing any wicket.

Roy was equally aggressive as Wes Agar returned with his second over of the spell and the pacer was welcomed by Roy in emphatic fashion. However, Agar was good enough to find an element of surprise and extracted extra bounce off the pitch to leave Roy playing uncomfortably, and the leading edge was snaffled comfortably by Rashid Khan at the cover region.

 Livingstone did not get too much of a strike when Roy was going all guns blazing at the other end, and he could not get going when he started getting the strike. In the end, Agar was better of him as well with his extra bounce as the right-hander tried to guide a delivery outside off stump to the third man for a single.

Colin Munro batted at the number three and Josh Inglis came to bat after the fall of Livingstone as the duo had to make sure the run-rate doesn't go higher than the manageable level, while also keeping wickets in hands. Munro throughout his career has struggled to pick leg spinners and in the end, Rashid Khan proved to be too good for him in the 11th over.

At the end of the 11 th over, the Scorchers were 85/3 with Mitchjellmarsh and Inglis at the crease and required rate plummeting down to 6.89 runs per over. The duo kept the scoreboard going with odd boundaries as Agar got on the wrong end of Marsh and yielded 15 runs in his third over that spoiled his bowling figure.

At the end of the 15th over, the Scorchers took the power surge and Agar was trusted by Carrey to keep a check on the Scorchers' duo, but it wasn’t to be as Both Marsh and Inglis took full toll of the field restriction and shifts the momentum that never allowed Strikers to come back in the game.

Earlier in the night, the Perth Scorchers’ captain Asthon Turner won the bat flip and they sent in the Strikes on an Adelaide Oval pitch that promised to offer some assistance with the new ball.  Jhye Richardson vindicated his skipper’s call and dismissed Phil Salt in the very first over and when Aaron Hardie got Jake Weatherald top-edging to Inglis in the third over, the Strikers were on the backfoot in the initial phase of the game itself.

Jason Behrendorff released a bit of pressure in the fourth over as the pair of Matt Renshaw and Carey started to look fluent in the middle.  Carey was particularly severe against Andrew Tye, who also did not help his cause bowling two back to back half volleys and the Strikers’ captain was not to miss out on the chance to get his team back in the momentum.

Aaron Hardie came back in his second over and dismissed Renshaw to peg back the Strikers and when Jonathan Wells got run out in the 10th over, Carey had his tasks cut out to take his side to a defendable total.

He wasn’t helped by his teammates and wickets kept falling around him but the left-hander held his composure and made sure that his side did not wither away before reaching a total his bowlers could attempt to defend. 

He cut loose once again against Tye and deposited him over the sightscreen in the 19th over that yielded 16 runs for the Strikers. He would have hoped for similar returns in the remaining two overs, but Jhye Richardson and Aaron Hardie were too good and gave away only four and eight runs in their respective overs. Carey was dismissed by Richardson after a magnificent 59-ball-82 that helped the Strikers post a respectable total.

This Scorchers’ win has opened up the contest in the Big Bash League with the Strikers equaling their number of wins and losses this season while the Scorchers coming off the mark with their first win the BBL this year.

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