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BBL 7, Match 2, Review: Brisbane Heat start off with a win despite Marcus Stoinis’ valiant effort

Shadab Khan chipped in with a couple of wickets in his first spell to push Melbourne completely on the back foot.

Marcus Stoinis vs Brisbane Heat
Marcus Stoinis leaves the field after being dismissed on 99. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Despite the heroics of Marcus Stoinis and James Faulkner with the bat, Melbourne Stars suffered a 15-run defeat at the hands of the Brisbane Heat in the game 2 of BBL 7 which was played at the Gabba today. Chasing a mammoth total of 207, Melbourne lost wickets early as four of their top order batsmen were back in the pavilion inside the first 7 overs with just 53 on the board.

Stoinis and Faulkner came together and stitched a remarkable partnership of 137 runs off 81 balls for the 5th wicket to keep Melbourne in the game all the way through, however it proved to be too big an ask for the pair in the end. Stoinis, in particular, was in brilliant form.

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He got into the act from the second ball of his innings which he tonked over mid-off for a six off the bowling of the Pakistani leggie Shadab Khan, he looked unstoppable. Not one Brisbane bowler managed to put him in any sort of trouble at the crease as he paced his innings beautifully and went after the right bowlers at the right time.

Faulkner, at the other end, played an ideal foil for him as he kept rotating the strike and made sure he got Stoinis back on strike as often as he could. The 27-year-old Tasmanian all-rounder who has fallen out of favour in terms of national selection showed his experience and didn’t try to match his partner shot for shot as he focused mainly on putting the ball into the gaps. However, whenever he was delivered a bad ball, he didn’t let it go either as he deposited a couple into the stands as well.

It had turned really ominous for Brisbane towards the end with Stoinis and Faulkner smashing everything, but Josh Lalor and Mark Steketee who bowled the last two overs kept their nerves and bowled some good slower deliveries. Needing 24 off the last over, Stoinis got 3 twos off the first 3 balls and then going for another two on the 4th ball, he was run out and missed his hundred by just 1 run which was such a shame as he deserved a hundred for the kind of innings he played. The Victorian faced 51 balls and scored 99 stroking 6 fours and as many sixes.

Earlier winning the toss and bowling first, Melbourne leaked boundaries from the outset. Brendon McCullum went hard in the powerplay as he always does, but even after getting his wicket at the score of 40, the Melbourne bowlers failed to keep the run rate in check as Brisbane churned out boundaries at will throughout the winnings with Joe Burns scoring a quickfire half-century, while Ben Cuttings playing a cameo of 35 off just 18 balls in the death. Stoinis was the pick with the ball as well for Melbourne as he finished with the figures of 3 for 38 in 4 overs.

The ball swung at the start of the second innings with the atmosphere getting a little cooler and Josh Lalor got Brisbane the first breakthrough in the very first over by dismissing Ben Dunk. Kevin Pietersen walked in at 3 for Melbourne and never looked comfortable against the moving ball.

He did hit a six, but he was in all sorts of trouble and was jumping all over the place. He was eventually caught at mid-off by Brendon McCullum at the score of 10 and then Shadab Khan chipped in with a couple of wickets in his first spell to push Melbourne completely on the back foot.

Brief Scores:

Brisbane Heat: 206/7 (Alex Ross 51, Joe Burns 50, Marcus Stoinis 38/3)

Melbourne Stars: 191/6 (Marcus Stoinis 99, James Faulkner 47, Shadab Khan 41/2)

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