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Last-ball four hands Heat victory

UPDATED 12 February, 2013 2:29PM AEST | by Christian Mammone at Adelaide Oval, Omnisport

Brisbane Heat have beaten Adelaide Strikers by three wickets on the final ball of a thrilling KFC Big Bash League clash at Adelaide Oval on Thursday.

Chasing 186 for victory, the Heat required 15 runs from the last over when Chris Hartley (five not out) hit a drive to the boundary for four following Peter Forrest's (12 not out) thumping six two balls earlier.

Hartley's boundary required a review after Callum Ferguson thought he had stopped the ball, but replays suggested the fielder had touched the rope, ensuring the Heat recorded their first win of the Twenty20 tournament.

The visitors' run chase gathered momentum after Luke Pomersbach smashed 65 runs, including two sixes and eight boundaries, and combined for a telling 99-run partnership with the impressive Joe Burns (37).

Once the duo's stand was broken following Burns' dismissal, the hosts sensed blood and claimed 4-45 courtesy of Kane Richardson (1-22) and batting hero Kieron Pollard's (2-38) ferocious spell to leave the Heat stranded on 5-150.

Chris Lynn (19) and Ben Cutting (13) chimed in with timely contributions to set up a tense finish before Hartley and Forrest batted through for a memorable victory.

Ferguson (52) and West Indies all-rounder Pollard (48) had earlier lifted Adelaide to 7-185.

Bowling first, Adelaide could not take advantage of the opening powerplay as they lost three wickets and scored just 40 runs inside the opening six overs.

Poor timing and forced shots were to blame for the early dismissals of Michael Klinger (one), James Smith (five) and Tim Ludeman (18).

The Heat's frequent changes and mix in bowlers also made it difficult for the Strikers batsmen to settle.

Nathan Reardon (25) and Ferguson finally broke free of Brisbane's shackles in the 11th over punishing Cutting (2-37) for 18 runs including two sixes and a four.

But the fourth-wicket stand came to an end when Reardon was caught in the deep at long-on to pave the way for Pollard's introduction.

Pollard took time to find his rhythm before the West Indian unloaded with an enormous six in the 15th over.

Ferguson followed with a four to reach 50 only to blow his gutsy innings the very next ball by striking Cutting's full delivery to Nathan Hauritz (0-24) at deep cover.

The Strikers flirted with a late collapse until Pollard crushed three boundaries in a row to propel the home side's total to 5-138 with four overs remaining.

The right-hander tormented Dan Christian (0-42) next when he thumped the all-rounder for two fours and a six to push the run rate close to 10 an over late in the innings.

Pollard had one more monstrous hit in him that sailed over the boundary rope before Thisara Perrera (3-27) fooled the 25-year-old with a slower ball which he top-edged high in the air to Hartley.

In identical fashion to the Strikers' innings, the Heat could not get out the blocks and paid the price as Johan Botha sent James Hopes packing for a duck.

Pomerbasch responded instantly though, battering a stunning six boundaries off the next two overs as the Heat cruised to 1-51 after the first batting powerplay.

The West Australian launched two sixes and another four moments later as he closed in on a third T20 half-century.

Burns joined the action with a couple of maximums of his own either side of being dropped.

The 23-year-old would not be lucky a second time when Pollard turned hero with the ball and dismissed the right-hander.

The breakthrough was timely for the hosts, putting an end to Burns' 99-run stand with the fiery Pomersbach.

Pomersbach was then caught by Richardson to put the run chase in turmoil, but Thisara Perrera would not give up and blasted two sixes until he was caught in spectacular fashion by Ludeman.

Perrera edged a short ball that rocketed off the bat behind the stumps only to be plucked by a diving Ludeman for a spectacular catch.

Richardson bowled Christian (12) to leave the Heat needing an unlikely 35 from the last 18 balls until the visitors' late heroics.

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia

First Posted 13 December, 2012 11:35PM AEST

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