BBL12, Matthew Short and Wes Agar contribute with efficient two-for to put an end to Melbourne Renegades’ pursuit. Melbourne Renegades 182 for 6 (Harper 63, Agar 2-26, Short 2-26) defeated Adelaide Strikers 202 for 4 (Lynn 69*, Kellepotha 2-32) by 20 runs. Chris Lynn hit his third consecutive half-century as Adelaide Strikers defeated Melbourne Renegades by 20 runs.
Lynn blasted an unbeaten 69 runs off 37 balls to lift the Strikers to their second consecutive total of 200 following a record run chase against the Hobart Hurricanes. With their fifth victory of the season, the Strikers disrupt Renegades’ pursuit and vault them to third on the BBL leaderboard.
Chris Lynn’s excellent form continues in BBL12
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Lynn has been on a roll from a slow start with his new squad before heading to the new cash-rich T20 tournament in the UAE. Lynn began cautiously, as he has done throughout his comeback season, after the Strikers lost openers Matthew Short and Ryan Gibson in the eighth over. He hit a powerful six down the ground off seamer Tom Rogers after scoring 25 off his first 18 balls. It ignited Lynn, who joined with Colin de Grandhomme for a scorching 78-run combination to propel Strikers beyond 200 for the second time.
De Grandhomme Showing his batting Skills in BBL12
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De Grandhomme’s 16-ball 32 was highlighted by three consecutive sixes off fast Kane Richardson, who moved tentatively at times and was unusually costly with 1 for 62 from four overs. Lynn closed the innings well with an attack on Richardson, highlighting his red-hot form. However, the power-hitting in hot weather took its toll on Lynn, who was taken off the field during the Renegades’ innings due to exhaustion.
Ruwantha Kellepotha shines on his BBL debut
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There was speculation over how a revamped Renegades assault would compensate for the departures of spin combo Mujeeb Ur Rahman and Akeal Hosein to the UAE. After the Strikers were thrashed on the powerplay, the onus was on legspinners Matt Critchley and Ruwantha Kellepotha, who was brought in as international substitutes.
With a six by Gibson off his first delivery during a 17-run over, Englishman Critchley could do nothing to slow the flow. Kellepotha fared better in his BBL debut, striking a length and slowing the runaway run rate. He ended the 63-run opening partnership by catching Gibson at the backward point and then dismissing Short with a half-tracker.
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Lynn’s penultimate ball of his allocated overs was smashed for six, which knocked the Sri Lankan’s statistics down a notch. But he was the Renegades’ best bowler, capping off a meteoric ascent for the 31-year-old journeyman, who earned a surprise Sheffield Shield call-up for Victoria earlier in the domestic season following good performances in Melbourne club cricket. Kellepotha has played 20 first-class games in Sri Lanka between 2011 and 2013, and he looms as an X-factor for Renegades following an impressive start.
Strikers triumph despite Colin de Grandhomme’s injury
After talisman Rashid Khan left for South Africa’s new T20 competition, the Strikers’ attack took on a new appearance. They did not choose top wicket-taker Henry Thornton, while experienced fast Peter Siddle is out with a back issue. They were dealt a setback when de Grandhomme was unable to play after straining his hamstring during batting. Strikers missed his ability to bowl slower deliveries, which was especially useful on the flat Adelaide pitch.
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However, the Strikers’ attack bowled with discipline to compensate for de Grandhomme’s absence, with former Australia T20 legspinner Cameron Boyce providing experience in a fine season debut. Short and Wes Agar both took two wickets, ensuring the Strikers were never truly threatened.
Sam Harper’s impressive recovery continues.
Sam Harper, the Renegades’ wicketkeeper-batter, has regained his ferocious form after scoring only six runs in four innings, including three ducks. He broke his drought against the Hurricanes with a match-winning 89 off 48 balls, and his comeback continued against the Strikers. While the Renegades’ top order faltered, Harper stood out and made his move in the middle innings. He hammered 19 runs in a five-ball purple patch to record his second half-century in a row.
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However, his ejection in the 13th over seemed to have ended Renegades’ campaign until a late cameo from Will Sutherland gave a glimmer of hope. Sutherland couldn’t produce anything magical, but his 31 off 14 balls just add to the impression that he should be ranked higher than his present No.7.