Twitter Reactions: Thunder's mess keep Adelaide Strikers alive in the playoff hunt

Twitter Reactions: Thunder’s mess keep Adelaide Strikers alive in the playoff hunt

Thunder required 30 from the last 2 overs, however, a 7-run penultimate over from Peter Siddle left them with 23 to get from the last 6.

Peter Siddle
Peter Siddle. (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)

In a game where the momentum swung like a pendulum, the Adelaide Strikers managed to defeat Sydney Thunder by 6 runs, to keep themselves alive in the race of playoff contention. Despite the entire top and middle-order of the Strikers getting starts, none of their batsmen could convert it into a knock of substance courtesy of a disciplined effort with both ball and in the field from the opponents, which restricted them to a par score of 159 for 6 after they elected to bat.

After a sluggish opening over, which saw openers Alex Carey and Jake Weatherald score no more than 2 runs, Carey opened his arms against Nathan McAndrew and Brendan Doggett, slamming them for five boundaries in a span of two overs. Unable to break free at his end, Weatherald looked content in playing the second fiddle to Carey, who survived a strong appeal for lbw off Ben Cutting in the fourth over, before being trapped by McAndrew in the 6th, which brought the duo’s 42-run alliance to an end.

Milne’s magic 

Having got his eyes in by then, Weatherald played his strokes freely alongside Phil Salt, who, too, looked positive during his 24-ball 31, which included four fours. Weatherald slammed a couple of sixes off Cutting in the 15-run 9th over, however, his outing was cut short on 31 after he managed to get himself run out by Chris Green.

For Thunder, it was Brendan Doggett who bagged a couple of wickets, however, it was Adam Milne’s unreal spell of 4-0-6-1 – the second cheapest in the BBL history – that dented the Strikers’ momentum severely. At 4 to replace Weatherald, Travis Head hit three boundaries in his 31 from 24, before Salt deposited Milne’s slower one to Doggett at short third man. Ryan Gibson scored a quick-fire 22, hitting a four and a couple of sixes before Doggett pinned him lbw.

Thunder’s hara-kiri

Chasing a modest target of 160 for the win, the start for Thunder was not to their liking as the centurion from the last game – Alex Carey – nicked Peter Siddle behind the wickets, having scored only 10 from 9. Thunder did not lose another wicket until the 10th over as Usman Khwaja and Callum Ferguson brought the team back on track through their 56-run stand for the second wicket.

While Khwaja hit four boundaries and a six in his 36 from 30, skipper Ferguson scored 22 from 18 with two fours. It was Michael Neser’s double-wicket 10th over that turned out to be match-changing as Ferguson miscued a hit straight to mid-off, whereas Khwaja scooped the immediately following delivery to the man at short fine leg. Thunder, who were 73/1 at one stage, soon fell to 100/6 as Sam Billings (6 from 3) was run out by a sensational piece of fielding, and Olivier Davies faintly edged Head to Carey behind the wickets.

Siddle saves the Strikers

After Alex Ross, who the Thunder had subbed in for Tanveer Sangha, fell to Siddle after scoring a run-a-ball 18, Ben Cutting and Nathan McAndrew joined forces in what looked like a comeback for Thunder. Invoking the Power Surge in the 18th over, McAndrew slammed three fours off Wes Agar to pick 15 runs.

When the Thunder required 30 from the last 2 overs, with Cutting and McAndrew hitting at will, it was hard to pick the team that was ahead. A 7-run penultimate over, however, from Siddle left the duo to hunt 23 from the last 6 balls, and even as Cutting slammed a six and four before the last ball went for four leg byes, the Thunder finished at 153 for 7, falling short by 6 runs.

Here are the best tweets