Twitter Reactions: Alex Hales seals the playoff berth for Thunder as Strikers keep prayers on

Twitter Reactions: Alex Hales seals the playoff berth for Thunder as Strikers keep prayers on

For the Strikers, the decision lies in the morrow as they will know their standing only after the triple header.

Alex Hales
Alex Hales. (Photo by Jason McCawley – CA/Cricket Australia via Getty Images)

The Sydney Thunder cruised to a clinical victory by 9 wickets against the Adelaide Strikers in a match reduced to 14-over a side after some heavy showers. Having elected to field after winning a delayed toss, the Thunder had to face Jake Weatherald’s onslaught after they did well to reduce the Strikers to 35/3.

It was Nathan McAndrew, who struck early to remove Alex Carey, getting him caught by Alex Hales at mid-off before Phil Salt picked the fielder at midwicket off Sangha and Travis Head lofted straight to sweeper cover off Green. Despite losing three wickets with hardly a score on the board, Weatherald continued to play aggressively, as he slammed a six and four off Tanveer Sanghain the ninth over.

Weatherald’s attack

Jonathan Wells then assaulted Adam Milne in the solitary Power Surge over (reduced to one due to rain; it fetched Strikers 18 runs) for a couple of fours, before Weatherald (80 from 47) smoked a couple of sixes off Chris Green in the 15-run 12th over. The 63-run stand was broken in the 13th over when Doggett nailed a yorker to Wells (21 from 18), which he missed entirely to be dismissed LBW.

Defending 115, Daniel Worrall struck immediately with the new ball for the Strikers as he rocked Usman Khwaja’s stumps to undo him for a golden duck. Pumped by the early breakthrough, Travis Head and Co seemed hopeful, only to be taken for a toss by Callum Ferguson ad Alex Hales. The duo scored briskly as Ferguson slapped a four off Neser in the second over, whereas Hales launched Siddle over midwicket for a six in the following over.

Hales does it again for Thunder

Despite giving the early wicket, skipper Head restored to other bowlers – Siddle, Neser, and Agar – instead of keeping Worrall on. Hales struck a couple of fours in the fourth over bowled by Worrall and followed it by another couple of boundaries off Agar in the next. Callum Ferguson, from the other end, managed to rotate the strike apart from scoring a boundary in the middle, while Hales brought up his fifty off 29 deliveries in the 10th over.

Ferguson, who hit six fours, contributed 46 from 33 in his 116-run stand with Hales, who stood unbeaten at 63 from just 39 with four sixes and as many fours. Having claimed a four-point win after chasing the target with 11 balls to spare, the Thunder have ascertained themselves a third-spot finish.

For the Strikers, the decision lies in the morrow as they will know their standing only after the triple header. If in case the Hurricanes end victorious against the Renegades and one amongst Heat and Stars win with a bonus point, it will be the end of Strikers’ campaign.