The Renegades are auctioning off their match-worn playing tops from tonight's match v Sixers to raise funds for the Victorian CFA Bushfire Appeal - Read full details here.
Young spinner turns the game
Introduced into the attack at 0-70, Tom Andrews certainly had a very difficult task.
The left-arm spinner, bowling the ninth over, needed to conjure something special with ball in hand in order to derail the Sixers.
Conjure something special he did.
A low, slightly short delivery bowled Josh Philippe (33 runs off 30 balls) first ball. Eight balls later, he had Moises Henriques trapped LBW for a duck.
The game had changed, and so had Andrews’ career. Called into the squad as an injury-replacement player earlier in the season, the 25-year-old has certainly staked his claim to hold his place in the weeks to come.
Keeper Sam Harper has been finding boundaries ever since his century from 46 balls in a pre-season practice match against the Melbourne Stars.
On Thursday night, the 23-year-old hosted his own New Year’s party, crunching 45 from 24 balls at the top of the order.
The fifth over, bowled by Tom Curran, was particularly special. This is how it played out:
4.1: Harper clips one off his pads for six. A crisp, clean and sweetly-timed shot that looked easy but was anything but.
4.2: Walks down the pitch THEN rolls his wrists to clear the off-side fielders behind square for four.
4.3: Marches down the pitch to crunch the ball over Curran’s head for four.
4.4: Slices one past the diving point fielder for four.
4.5: Dot ball (gasps echo around Marvel Stadium).
4.6: Harper strolls down the pitch and sends one back past Curran again for four.
All up, it was 22 off six balls, and it served to gloriously underline Harper’s enormous talent.
DC makes it count at the finish
Dan Christian has played such a key role at the end of many Renegades’ innings over the past 12 months, and he was at it again on Thursday night.
Coming to the crease at 4-108, Christian put his foot down late in the piece, crunching three fours and a six on his way to 32 not out from 17 balls.
That aforementioned six was huge, too, clearing the mid-on boundary and sailing into the Marvel Stadium crowd.
It was, of course, less than a year ago that a not-out Christian innings of 31 from 14 balls against the Sixers booked the Renegades a ticket into the BBL|08 final.
Got a curious fact for us?
When debutant Tom Andrews bowled Josh Philippe with his first delivery of the night, it was his first wicket as a Renegade. The match was actually his first BBL appearance since playing for the Adelaide Strikers on 6 January 2017. In fact, that wicket was his first in BBL cricket – ever (he went wicketless in his two games for the Strikers).
What comes next?
It’s a fast turnaround: the Renegades have a date with their mates the Melbourne Stars on Saturday 4 January at the MCG.
Reckon the BBL|08 final will get a mention at some stage in the lead up?