Mooney credits skipper Short for keeping Heat hungry
The Heat star dominated another WBBL decider on Sunday and remains hungry for more despite being out of contract with the Brisbane side
Laura Jolly in Brisbane
8 December 2019, 08:25 PM AEST
Hungry and humble.
That is the mantra Brisbane Heat have lived by this Rebel WBBL season and the attitude Beth Mooney believes was the key to winning back-to-back titles.
In WBBL|05, the defending champions went from the hunters to the hunted but if they felt the pressure, it did not show in what was a remarkably consistent season.
Pure joy! 🏆 Enjoy it, @HeatBBL 🤩 #WBBLFinals #WBBL05 pic.twitter.com/WOhzpk3Wds— Rebel Women's Big Bash League (@WBBL) December 8, 2019
Losing just four matches on their way to a second WBBL championship, the Heat won 10 of their last 11 contests.
Fittingly, it was Mooney who led the way for the Heat as they successfully chased the Adelaide Strikers’ 7-161 with 11 balls to spare with an unbeaten 56.
It capped off a stellar season for the left-handed opener, who hit a staggering 743 runs – the third highest in WBBL history – at 74.30 including nine half-centuries.
But Mooney credited the influence of captain Kirby Short for the Heat’s ability to back it up after shocking the Sixers in the WBBL|04 final last campaign.
"Kirby's done a lot of work with the Richmond leadership mentoring people there with Trent Cotchin and the coach (Damien Hardwick) and people like that and they sort of came up with that together," Mooney said.
"She came back and wanted us to have something that made us not forget where we've come from and the people that have been before us but make sure we don't leave any stone unturned.
"It's easy when you've won a championship to sort of rest on your laurels but I think this year we just wanted to keep getting better and better because once you've started winning people start to hunt you."
For the second year running, Mooney produced a player-of-the-match innings in the WBBL decider, albeit in far less dramatic circumstances to last year’s effort against the Sixers in Sydney, where she battled heat exhaustion to score 65 as the game went down to the wire.
This time around, Mooney was out in the middle when Laura Harris hit the winning runs – another repeat of last year’s final – as the Heat cruised home with 11 balls to spare.
"I didn’t know what to do actually, I remember I was on the sidelines last year (when the Heat won) and I ran onto the field as soon as they hit the winning runs," Mooney said.
"So I took a moment to realise what we’d done.
"We went into this season and we got a lot of questions about back to back … we made sure we shut them down and and just talked about how great this competition is and how you never know what you’re going to get on the day.
"Today was our day and it was an amazing feeling to be out there and make sure we got over the line."
Several Heat stars including Mooney and teammate Jess Jonassen are out of contract beyond this season, leaving the reigning champions with work to do if they are to keep their championship group together.
But the proud Queenslander admits it will be hard to entice her away from the teal – while for now, her mind is firmly on celebrating Brisbane’s win, and on settling into her new home, with the Australian star set to settle on her first home on Monday.
"I haven’t thought about it too much … but in terms of my lifestyle (with the Heat), its pretty good, I get to walk my dog in the morning before a home game and be at home with my people," she said.
"They get to sit in the crowd and watch me play at Allan Border Field, which is one of the greatest grounds in the world, I don’t think (I’d want play anywhere else).
"(Now) I’ve got three weeks off and settlement for my house is tomorrow.
"It’s been a great weekend, I get a trophy and I get a set of keys to my new house, so I’m pretty excited."