T20 Big Bash League - KFC

Scorchers secure first win

16/12/2012 22:24 PM
By Adam Lucius, Omnisport

What happened
The Scorchers won the toss and elected to bowl first under leaden skies. They quickly had a sleepy Sixers side in early trouble as the batsmen failed to come to terms with the conditions. The ball held up and swung but there were some poor shots played at the top of the order. At one stage the world record low score in T20 history (30) was under threat as the Sixers slumped to 5-18. They managed to crawl past that mark for the loss of six wickets, the next target avoiding the Australian all-time record low score (69). The men in magenta ticked that one off as well, thanks mainly to Stephen O'Keefe (29), Ian Moran (20) and some lusty late hitting from Brett Lee (22 not out). The Sixers needed quick wickets and plenty of them if they were to throw some doubts into the Scorchers' dugout. But their bowling and fielding was almost as bad as the batting. The Perth side cruised home with seven wickets to spare on the back of Herschelle Gibbs' controlled knock of 40.        

Where it was won
The bowlers set this victory up for the Scorchers but their batsmen could quite easily have thrown all the good work away with a poor start. But openers Gibbs and Shaun Marsh erased any nerves with a first wicket partnership of 51. The men in the Tequila Sunrise shirts were in cruise control from there.    

Where it was lost
The Scorchers knew they had to hit the ground running after two straight losses and wasted no time eating into the much-vaunted Sixers batting line-up. Michael Beer took two early wickets to help reduce the hosts to 4-14 and it was always going to be a struggle from there. The Sixers limped to 6-28 before a recovery enabled them to sneak past the 100 mark and at least give their bowlers something to aim at. But 113 was always going to be far too skinny.

Who killed it
The Scorchers' bowling unit all did their job superbly but Nathan Coulter-Nile deserves special praise. He only took the one wicket, removing the dangerous Steve Smith for a duck, but restricted the Sixers to just nine runs from his four overs. Alfonso Thomas and Beer, with two wickets apiece, were also quality contributors.

Wow moment
It was 'wow' as in I can't believe they can be that bad after the Sixers put down Gibbs in consecutive balls. Dom Thornely was the first culprit followed by Lee's blooper at deep mid wicket. Gibbs went on to top score, the two misses summing up a dreadful night for the hosts.      

Where to next
The suddenly buoyant Scorchers head north to take on Brisbane Heat at the Gabba on Tuesday night. The Heat are coming off a thrilling last-ball victory over the Adelaide Strikers. The Sixers lick their wounds for a few days before travelling to the MCG to meet Warnie's Melbourne Stars on Friday evening. The spin king will love getting inside the visitors' heads to find out whether the doubts have crept in following the BBL champions' first loss in 13 outings.