Melbourne Stars 135 (Cartwright 36, Richardson 4-25) were defeated by Perth Scorchers 136 for 4 (Turner 53, Wood 2-29) by six wickets in BBL 12. Jhye Richardson bowled quickly to stun Melbourne Stars before captain Ashton Turner chased wonderfully under pressure again as Perth Scorchers won by six wickets at Perth Stadium. Richardson was twice on a hat-trick and collected four wickets when Stars opted to bat, helping Stars to a modest 135.
In BBL 12 Left-arm spinner Ashton Agar, who emerged as the favorite for selection in the Sydney Test match, began strongly before succumbing to late punishment to end with 1 for 36 from four overs. The Scorchers played carefully before comfortably surpassing the mark, with Turner hitting 53 off 26 balls to propel the reigning champions to the top of the table.
Richardson’s excellent form continues in BBL 12
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In a timely reminder to national selectors, Richardson has been brilliant in his comeback from a persistent heel ailment. He got eight wickets in his first three outings before going out empty-handed against the Adelaide Strikers. He was keen to get back among the wickets, but he was thrashed early on by Tom Rogers, who blasted him for three consecutive boundaries in the final over of the powerplay.
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Richardson, on the other hand, hit back with a smart slower ball before catching Beau Webster’s lbw first up with a quick delivery. He threw everything into his hat-trick delivery, which included a 150-mph ball pulled out by Nick Larkin. Richardson wasn’t done yet, as he grabbed wickets with successive balls in the 14th over.
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First, he was helped by a fantastic catch from Faf du Plessis, who clutched onto a skier to eliminate Nathan Coulter-Nile. He then yorked Luke Wood to conclude the over but was forced to wait for his opportunity at a hat-trick. He returned in the 18th over but was foiled once again, this time by Trent Boult.
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Out-of-form Stoinis struggles in BBL 12, and Boult’s finest knock of his career
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Marcus Stoinis has been under a lot of pressure in BBL 12 to perform in the absence of injured leader Glenn Maxwell. However, when challenging Covid-19, he has failed to produce consecutive ducks to begin the season. He subsequently hit just four runs in a humiliating home defeat to the Scorchers before being rested against the Sydney Sixers on Boxing Day.
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Stoinis was hoping for a different outcome on the same pitch where he struck a blistering half-century against Sri Lanka in the T20 World Cup. Stoinis couldn’t come to the rescue when the Stars were in serious difficulty, falling for 10. Wickets continued to tumble for the Stars in BBL 12, who was 8 for 86 when a cavalier 49-run partnership between Hilton Cartwright and Boult gave them a goal to defend.
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Boult’s finest knock of his career in BBL 12
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With a trio of sixes, Boult finished 23 not out off 16 balls, his greatest T20 total in 44 innings. Lyth performs, and Turner adds the final touches. The Scorchers, as they have done for many years, prefer to bat first and let their little assault defend well. Opponents feel they are vulnerable to chasing, and their sole loss this season came when batting second against the Hobart Hurricanes.
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Last time around, they just barely made it over the line chasing 134 after their top order batted wildly. Taking everything into consideration, the Scorchers batted conservatively, with newcomer Adam Lyth anchoring the innings. Lyth was under pressure to save his job after scoring only 25 runs in four innings, but he stifled the Stars’ onslaught.
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In BBL 12 despite the early wickets of du Plessis and Aaron Hardie, who was promoted up to No.3 but scored just 17 in a tryout for a potential call-up to Australia’s third Test squad, the Scorchers remained unruffled. Lyth reached 35 points before being forced to play on, leaving Scorchers with more to do. Turner was calm under pressure again, as he thrillingly smashed star legspinner Adam Zampa to continue his resurgence following a form dip.
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