While the 1st week of WBBL 06 witnessed a few rain-hit games, 2nd week was no different. Three matches ended with no result in the 2nd week.
Here is the WBBL 06 2nd week review:
All-round Heather Knight Guides Thunders at The Top:
Sydney Thunder coach Trevor Griffin had said prior to the WBBL 06 that said without the stalwarts of the game, his side lacked the experience so they had decided to bring in some overseas experience to support the skipper, Haynes. Griffin has won two KIA Super League Title with West Storm in England and asked Heather Knight to join the Thunders. So, Thunders has included two English batters in form of Heather Knight and Tammy Beaumont to strengthen their batting order, which otherwise in the very young side.
Hobart might have missed the trick when they decided not to sign their top scorer from the last season. Knight topped the batting chart of Hobart with 282 runs with 2 half-centuries last season. English skipper proved the decision of Trevor Griffin right to include her in order to make a stronger middle order. After two washed out games in the first weekend, Thunders won both their games this time and Knight played a major role in both of them.
After losing early wickets, Sammy Jo Johnson’s counter-attacking 13-ball 30 gave Thunder a space to breathe against Adelaide Strikers. Heather Knight, who came out to bat at No. 4, started her innings with a four to Sarah Coyte and never looked back from there. Along with skipper Rachael Haynes, she treated one of the strongest bowling attacks of the tournament with disdain. She hit three boundaries to McGarth and two to young Darcie Brown who has picked up 3 wickets in her debut match.
In the 17th over, she completed her half-century by sending Sarah Coyte to the boundary thrice, in the consecutive balls. Stefanie Taylor brought in to attack but Knight showed no sign of stopping and hit two sixes in the over. Before getting out to Tahlia McGrath in the 4th ball of the 19th over she added 14 more in the first three balls. In last 7 overs Thunders added 94 runs out of which Knight scored 64 runs from 23 balls. Her innings of 83 from 39 with 11 fours and 3 sixes, helped Thunders to reach to a total of 190. They went on to win the match by 58 runs.
On Sunday, against defending champion Brisbane Heat, Thunder was going well after 12 overs. However once again the rain halted the game and they didn’t get the further chance to bat on. Due to the calculation of DLS Heats need to score 45 from 30 balls. Though Ismail conceded 11 runs in the first over, Sam Bates with her wicket maiden turned the things. She removed the Harris sisters.
After Smith’s economical over the equation was 29 from 12 balls. Knight came to bowl the 4th over. After conceding two singles from the first two balls, she sent back Maddy Green to the pavilion with her off-spin. A ball later she removed skipper Jess Jonassen who was batting on 14 from 8, and Redmayne was bowled for not. Her figure 1-0-3-3 was the last nail in the coffin for the Heats. Thunders won the match by 15 runs.
Seamers Sizzle the Opponents:
Melbourne Stars got the chances to play the complete match against Hurricanes after all of their three matches got abandoned in WBBL 06. Star skipper Meg Lanning won the toss and decided to field first. English duo Katherine Brunt and Nat Sciver, using the overcast condition and moister of the pitch made life harder for the Hurricanes.
Rachel Priest was firs to depart of the bowling of Brunt for not. She tried to guide the shortest ball directed at her body to the third man, but the ball found Lanning at slip. In the next over, Sciver trapped Mathews in front of the wicket and Naomi Stalenberg became the victim of Holly Ferling. Hall was next to depart and Hurricanes were reduced to 18/4 in the 4th over.
Though Tyron hit a few boundaries against Sutherland, she became the 2nd victim of Sciver. Due to Nicola Carey’s patient unbeaten 26 helped them to survive the middle overs, young Tess Flintoff joined the party by taking 2/5 in her 2 overs. Sciver’s 3/21 and Brunt’s 3/17 restricted Hurricanes to 89.
In the match against Sixers and Renegades, seamers took the upper hand too. Marizanne Kapp removed her national teammate Lizelle Lee in her 2nd over. 17 years old Stella Campbell who took 6 wickets in the previous season shared the new ball with Kapp. Her double blow to star-studded top order reduced Renegades to 29/3. She used her height to trouble the batters and got the wickets of international cricketer like Amy Satterthwaite. Out of the 7 wickets Sixers claimed, seamers got 6. Campbell’s 3/32 in 4 overs was instrumental to check the runs for Sixers. Perry, Kapp and Silver-Holms chipped in with a wicket each.
Alyssa Healy and Elyse Villani’s Match Defining Half Centuries:
Elyse Villani who has lost her place in the national colour but in WBBL 06, she came and hit an unbeaten 51 from 32 balls to place her candidature. Chasing a mere total of 90 from 19 overs Villani played the first over from Vakarewa calmly. However, as Satterthwaite brought in West Indian opener Mathews in the attack, Villani sent her to the boundary thrice in the same over. It set the momentum of her innings. Though they lost two wickets in between, it didn’t stop the run flowing. Villani and Sciver run hard between the wickets and approached the target sensibly. Two sixes in the same over against Tyron took Villani to her coveted half-century. Stars won the match by 8 wickets.
In the last match of the week, Sixers need to score run a ball to secure a victory. However, Healy had a different plan. After her brisk knock in the previous match, she took the attack to the opposition from the first ball of the chase. left arm spinner Sophie Molineux is known for her economical bowling even in the power play. Healy set the tempo of the match by amassing 18 runs from the over.
Healy then collected a couple of boundaries from the over of Maitlan Brown, who was phenomenal against Stars in the previous match. Molly Strano, the highest wicket taker of WBBL came into the attack in search of a break through. But Healy was difficult to restrain that day. Heally completed her half-century by taking on Molineux once again. Before falling to leg spinner Wareham she scored 60 from 31balls which consisted 11 fours and a lone six. Ash Gardner with her 8-ball-20, completed the unfinished job.