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Five of the best Big Bash matches

13 January 2017

After last night’s epic at Etihad Stadium, we take a look back at five of the other best matches in KFC Big Bash League history

BBL|02 semi-final: Melbourne Stars v Perth Scorchers

Scores: Melbourne Stars 2-183 (White 88, Hodge 70*) off 18 overs lost to Perth Scorchers 2-142 (S.Marsh 68, Voges 36) by eight wickets on the last ball, via the Duckworth-Lewis Method.

A remarkable rain-affected semi-final, the game began in controversial fashion when James Faulkner strolled out to meet Simon Katich for the toss instead of regular skipper Shane Warne. The King of Spin directed proceedings as normal but the Stars put the C next to Faulkner’s name as both Warne and Cameron White had received sanctions for slow over rates. Brilliant knocks from White and Brad Hodge propelled the visitors to 183 from their 18 overs, a target reduced to 139 from 13 overs for the Scorchers after more drizzle. Shaun Marsh took 27 off Alex Keath’s only over to kick-start the Scorchers innings, with Warne not bowling himself because of the slippery pill. With 10 required off the final over of the match, Faulkner delivered six excellent deliveries but all three Stars captains failed to realise only three players were inside the circle for the last ball. Instead of winning by a run, the allrounder was forced to re-bowl and Adam Voges did the rest with a boundary, leaving the Stars wondering how they had squandered a final berth.

A thrilling finish to semi-final showdown

BBL|03: Perth Scorchers v Sydney Sixers

Scores: Perth Scorchers 5-153 (Katich 71, Whiteman 53. Lee 4-28) tied with Sydney Sixers 9-153 (Smith 65, Arafat 4-24, Behrendorff 3-21). Perth won via super over.

The first super over in BBL history saw a tremendous match finish in somewhat anti-climatic circumstances. A four-wicket haul to Sixers veteran Brett Lee restricted the Scorchers to 153 and future Test captain Steve Smith looked to have the Sixers on track for victory. But when he departed in the 18th over, the hosts limped to a tie to force a one-over eliminator.  And after wily Scorchers import Yasir Arafat bowled Smith first ball before bagging Moises Henriques (for his second duck of the match), all Adam Voges (again!) had to do was strike a boundary from Brett Lee’s first ball to claim a remarkable win.

Super Over highlights: Sixers vs Scorchers

BBL|01: Brisbane Heat v Hobart Hurricanes

Scores: Brisbane Heat 4-201 (Hayden 76, Robinson 44) defeated Hobart Hurricanes 4-198 (Birt 74, Shah 69) by three runs.

Top-placed Hobart Hurricanes made the trip to the Gabba perhaps expecting to make light work of bottom-of-the-ladder Brisbane Heat. But a blistering start by Heat openers Andrew Robinson and former Test bat Matthew Hayden had the underdogs in triple digits in just the ninth over, before going on to score the BBL’s first total in excess of 200. When Jono Wells fell for 57 for in the eighth over, the upset looked to be sealed but stunning cameos from Travis Birt and Owais Shah soon had the Hurricanes in sight of victory. Shah struck back-to-back boundaries in the final over to reduce the equation to three from two balls. But Alister McDermott held his nerve as Birt and Shah fell off the last two deliveries of the game to ice a thriller for the ‘Heat.

A classic between the Heat and the Hurricanes

BBL|04 grand final: Sydney Sixers v Perth Scorchers

Scores: Sydney Sixers 5-147 (Henriques 77, Carters 35*) lost to Perth Scorchers (S.Marsh 73, Klinger 33, Lee 3-25) by four wickets off the final ball of the match.

BBL|04 got the showpiece finale it deserved with the Sixers and the Scorchers again playing out a classic. Arriving at the crease with his side 2-7, skipper Moises Henriques was the shining light for the Sixers with his 57-ball 77 the only major contribution to their sub-par 147 against the strong Scorchers attack. Shaun Marsh (73 off 59) had the reigning champions rollicking along before a late stutter, eventually leaving them with eight to get off the final over of the game, and of Brett Lee’s career. His first offering went for four but he struck back, removing Nathan Coulter-Nile and Sam Whiteman with consecutive yorkers with the scores level. Last ball: another ripping delivery from Lee, eeked out by Yasir Arafat, batsmen scramble for a run, Henriques fumbles the accurate throw at the non-striker’s end and the Scorchers claim back-to-back titles.

The dramatic final over of BBL|04, and Brett Lee

BBL|05: Sydney Sixers v Adelaide Strikers

Scores: Sydney Sixers (Haddin 54*, Cowan 43, Rashid 3-34) lost to Adelaide Strikers (Head 101*, Dwarshuis 3-25) by five wickets with three balls remaining.

The match where Travis Head announced himself to the Australian public, this game is etched in the memories of all who witnessed it. Brad Haddin and Ed Cowan helped the Sixers to an imposing 176 and the Strikers looked dead and buried with 51 needed off the last 18 balls. But Head went 4, 6, 4, 6, 6, 1 off the 18th over of the match from Sean Abbott to drag his side back into the contest. The left-hander’s ninth six in the final over of the game brought up his century as well as capping a stunning Strikers victory on New Year’s Eve.

Head's New Year's Eve miracle

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