The score: Sydney Sixers 2-129 (Nic Maddinson 62, Daniel Hughes 49no; Jackson Coleman 1-14) defeated Melbourne Stars 7-128 (Glenn Maxwell 28; Nathan Lyon 3-18, Sean Abbott 2-35) by eight wickets with 29 balls to spare
Match in a tweet: Ouch! The Sixers smash the Stars on their home turf, with Maddinson belting five sixes in a powerful display of hitting #BBL07
The hero: Nic Maddinson endured a frustrating run in BBL|07, posting five scores between 24 and 31 from his first seven innings. Tonight he helped the Sixers make light work of their target, racing to a half-century in just 23 balls and finishing with 62 from 31 deliveries – at a neat strike rate of 200. The left-hander belted six boundaries and five sixes in an action-packed knock and while his team can’t qualify for the semi-finals, Maddinson showcased the class that saw him selected in Australia’s Test side last summer. Maddinson combined with Daniel Hughes (49 not out) for a quick-fire 92-run stand, with the Sixers cruising at 2-121 in the 14th over when he departed. Hughes played second fiddle but backed up his unbeaten 66 against the Thunder with another impressive hand.
The support cast: After an outstanding Magellan Ashes series campaign, during which he snared 21 wickets, star off-spinner Nathan Lyon has continued his red-hot form for the Sixers with four wickets from two outings. Tonight he claimed the key wickets of Ben Dunk (7), Kevin Pietersen (9) and Peter Handscomb (14) to dismantle the Stars top order and help lay the foundations for the Sixers second consecutive win after six losses in a row to start the campaign.
The consolation effort: The Stars had little to smile about tonight after harbouring hopes that their victory over arch rivals the Renegades would kick-start their season – even though their finals hopes were dashed after five consecutive defeats. No one managed more than 28 with the bat – Glenn Maxwell and James Faulkner topscored – and the bowlers were largely ineffective against the belligerent Sixers batsmen. Left-arm fast bowler Jackson Coleman has produced some encouraging performances in his first four BBL games, collecting five wickets.There is plenty for coach Stephen Fleming and his players to ponder with three regular-season matches remaining in BBL|07.
The catch: Maxwell took an outstanding catch and also saved Pietersen's blushes with this effort, the incident drawing plenty of laughs from the Englishman while he was mic’d up for Channel 10.
The stat: Maddinson became the fifth player in BBL history to pass 50 sixes during his entertaining half-century. He is third on the all-time list with 52 sixes, behind Brisbane Heat Bash Brother and runway leader Chris Lynn (100) and Melbourne Renegades gun Aaron Finch (59). Chris Gayle and Brad Hodge, who have each cleared the ropes 51 times, round out the top five.
The fantasy wrap: Lyon ($87,600) was rewarded with a score of 94 after grabbing three scalps, while Maddinson ($54,100) scored 82 and Sean Abbott ($60,700) 72.
The next stops: The Sixers face a quick turnaround and will host Brisbane Heat at the SCG on Thursday, while the Stars next tackle the Thunder at the MCG on Saturday night.