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KFC BBL|10

New faces make a winning start

12 December 2020

Could there have been a better start to the BBL|10 season? The Melbourne Renegades could not have asked for more than a seven wicket win over the Perth Scorchers in Hobart on Saturday night.

Despite losing the toss, the Renegades bowled the Scorchers out for 130 before cruising to a seven-wicket win with more than three overs to spare.

Six new faces
It was a new-look Renegades outfit that wore the red shirt out onto Hobart’s Blundstone Arena.

Six of the 11 players were representing the club for the first time, four of whom had never played a Big Bash match in their lives.

Importantly, each left their mark on the victory.

Left-armer Josh Lalor set the tone early, bowling Colin Munro (0 runs off 3 deliveries) in the first over before claiming Joe Clarke (10 off 6) in his second.

He returned later to end Aaron Hardie’s knock (33 off 36) to finish with 3-30 from his four overs and Player of the Match honours.

Peter Hatzoglou, too, turned heads, bowling his off-spinners with lovely drift and flight, bamboozling both Cameron Bancroft (3 off 4) and Mitch Marsh (17 off 18) in the process. He took 2-29 from his four overs – not bad for a man who was only called into the squad a matter of days ago as a Local Replacement Player.

Elsewhere, Benny Howell bowled tightly (0-14 off 3 overs) and showcased his slower ball variations, Jack Prestwidge took a nice catch in the deep off Beau Webster’s off-spin, and batsmen Rilee Rossouw (17 off 15) and Jake Fraser-McGurk (0 off 1) were at the crease when the Renegades completed their seven wicket win


Early wickets
One of the Renegades’ areas of struggle in BBL|09 was taking wickets in the Power Play. Try as they might, with pace or spin, for whichever reason, breakthroughs were hard to come by.

That all changed in the fading Hobart light as Lalor and Kane Richardson (3-22) tore through the Scorchers’ top order.

A clever piece of fielding from wicket keeper Sam Harper that saw him run out Ashton Turner (24 off 16) at the non-strikers’ end further slowed Perth’s attempt to rebuild from a patchy start, and from Bancroft’s dismissal at 5-62, they never fully recovered.

A Marshterclass
There’s been so much written and spoken about Shaun Marsh’s batting over many years in the international and domestic scenes.

We all know how talented he is with the bat, and that his best is good enough to destroy even the world’s finest bowlers.

We have all marveled at how he began the Sheffield Shield season with Western Australia.

And on Saturday night, all who watched his exhibition of Twenty20 batting in Hobart could only stand and applaud (be it at the ground or in front of their television screens).

Opening the batting alongside Aaron Finch (35 off 28), the pair put on 70 for the first wicket before Finch fell in the ninth over.

From there, Marsh kicked into another gear, slicing and pulling his way to 62 from 47 balls before he was bowled only one run from victory.

His seven fours and one six were a delight to watch, and a pertinent reminder of what Renegades fans can expect from him in the weeks to come.


Milestone watch
Look, we don’t want to jinx anyone, but it’s worth noting these two milestones are on the horizon.

Aaron Finch is only 65 runs away from claiming the title of all-time leading run scorer in Big Bash history from Chris Lynn.

Lynn, granted, will have plenty of runs up his sleeve this summer, but the Gades’ captain is now in striking distance.

Kane Richardson, meanwhile, is one wicket away from becoming the first Renegade to bring up the half century with the ball.

His first 49 wickets have come at a strike rate of 15.6 and an average of 19.97, a long, long way ahead of the other Renegades at the top of the wicket taking tree.


What comes next
There’s no rest for the wicked. The Renegades will be back in action at 7.15pm (AEDT) on Sunday night when they meet the Sydney Sixers at Hobart’s Blundstone Arena. The match will be broadcast live on Channel Seven and Fox Cricket.