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BBL 2016-17, Match 27 Review: Marcus Harris powers Melbourne Renegades to sensational win

ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA – JANUARY 16: Marcus Harris of the Melbourne Renegades bats during the Big Bash League match between the Adelaide Strikers and the Melbourne Renegades at Adelaide Oval on January 16, 2017 in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by Daniel Kalisz/Getty Images)

In a battle between two bottom placed teams in the tournament, Melbourne Renegades somehow managed to remain afloat in BBL 6 after their nerve-wracking win against the Adelaide Strikers at the Adelaide Oval today. Riding on a brilliant 85 by opener Marcus Harris, the Melbourne Renegades reached a competitive 171 at the end of their 20 overs. Despite being in the contest till the last over, the Strikers eventually fell agonisingly close and lost the match by 6 runs. The Renegades foreign recruit Thisara Perera was the pick of the bowlers who finished with 4/25 in 3 overs.

Adelaide Strikers captain Brad Hodge won the toss and put the visitors in. Openers Marcus Harris and captain Aaron Finch began pretty well and stitched together a valuable 55 runs stand for the opening wicket. Harris began with a crisp boundary in the 2nd over of Liam O’Connor and followed it up followed it up with a hat-trick of boundaries in the very next over of Wes Agar. The captain who was a mere spectator watching Harris hit all those boundaries decided to replicate his partner and struck 3 gorgeous boundaries of the very next over of O’Connor.

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Finch was eventually dismissed in the 6th over of Michael Neser who was the most economical bowler for the Strikers. But his dismissal didn’t stop Harris a single bit as he kept going after the bowlers. Harris plundered Kieron Pollard for two sixes and a four in the 8th over and the juggernaut didn’t seem to end.

Cameron White, on the other hand, gave away his wicket in the 11th over, after hitting a monstrous six of the previous delivery. Tom Cooper joined Harris in the middle and struck a big six of Ish Sodhi. Cooper couldn’t carry on his power hitting as he was dismissed in the 14th over of Neser. Harris was eventually dismissed by Ish Sodhi in the 16th over after the southpaw had scored 85 of 53 deliveries with 6 fours and 4 sixes. The visitors couldn’t really accelerate from there and eventually ended their allotted 20 overs at 171/9. Kieron Pollard was the pick of the Strikers bowlers despite being plundered by Harris and finished with 3/30 in 3 overs.

Also read: Twitter Reaction: Melbourne Renegades hold their nerve to secure victory

Chasing a tricky 172 to win, openers Tim Ludeman and Ben Dunk began in an impressive fashion and shared a quickfire 50 runs stand for the opening wicket. Ludeman began with a boundary in the opening over of Tom Cooper. Dunk was not far away either as he joined in the fun and smashed James Pattinson for a four and a six in the 2nd over of the innings. After scoring 20 balls 28 Ludeman was dismissed in the 6th over Nathan Rimmington.

Dunk too fell in quick succession as the hosts were reduced to 64/2 in the 9th over. Jake Weatherald and Keiron Pollard played some good shots before giving away their wickets in quick succession at a crucial juncture of the game. The visitors were reduced to 98/4 following Pollard’s dismissal. Despite the fall of quick wickets, the Strikers would have taken heart from the fact that they still had the most experienced T20 batsman Brad Hodge in their ranks.

Hodge played well for his 26 but was unable to provide them the impetus which was needed to get over the line. Hodge fell in the 18th over which was perhaps the last nail in the coffin. Jonathan Dean who came into the middle after the fall the 5th wicket kept the hosts in the game by smashing Sunil Narine for 17 runs in the penultimate over.

Thisara Perera was asked to bowl the final over. He began in a terrific fashion by dismissing Jonathan Dean in the first delivery of the over. Wes Agar struck two consecutive boundaries of the next two deliveries to keep them in the hunt but eventually surrendered his wicket in the 4th ball of the over. The Renegades somehow held their nerves and scraped through a thrilling 6 runs win.

Brief Scores

Melbourne Renegades 171/9 in 20 overs (Marcus Harris 85, Kieron Pollard 3/30)

Adelaide Strikers 165/8 in 20 overs (Ben Dunk 32, Thisara Perera 4/25)

Melbourne Renegades won by 6 runs

 

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