Burns bids to turn Bash Bros into a trio
Heat batsman makes his case to join Brisbane's most exclusive club, but Lynn and McCullum aren't listening ... yet
Adam Burnett at the Gabba
21 December 2017, 10:25 AM AEST
Joe Burns continues to tick the boxes as he plots his way into Brisbane's most exclusive club – that of dynamic duo the Bash Brothers.
Burns has made no secret of his plans to turn the double act into a trio – spruiking his case among teammates and on social media, where he has not-so-subtly referred to "the three Bash Brothers" – and his lightning half-century at the Gabba on Wednesday night was an admirable audition.
Particularly in the absence of Chris Lynn, who was ruled out with a hamstring injury and thus unable to take his place alongside captain Brendon McCullum, putting paid to the crowd's hopes of seeing the Bash Brothers in action.
"It's always a challenge, the first Twenty20 of the season, but it's nice to get a win and nice that the batters spent some time at the crease in this format," said the right-hander, who blazed an even 50 from just 28 balls.
"In this game it's just momentum. The situation you find yourself in changes from game to game, (so you have to) make sure you're hitting the ball well and give yourself a chance, and take good options once you're in the middle."
At the toss, McCullum propelled Burns' hopes of cracking the elite twosome when he alluded to the hopeful No.4 stepping into Lynn's shoes, before the Kiwi legend blasted 40 of his own from just 22 balls – including 19 from one Scott Boland over.
Clearly buoyed by his prospects, Burns looked determined to outdo his skipper and present an unarguable case for admission into what he clearly believes can become Brisbane's Holy Trinity.
In the 11th over of the innings, passersby could have been mistaken for thinking Lynn himself was on strike, as Burns teed off, creaming four fours and a six from seasoned campaigner John Hastings in a devastating display of hitting.
Among the chaos were pull shots, jump shots, slower-ball slams and cheeky squirts – the full gamut of T20 batting and as good a case as any for knocking down the vault-like Bash Brothers door.
In the end, his action-packed half-century included three maximums and, coming at a critical time of the innings when momentum had swung towards the Stars, played a critical role in helping his side to a monster total of 7-206.
The question on everyone's lips – well certainly on Burns' – was a simple one: was his stirring knock good enough to earn him 'Bash Brothers' credentials?
"I think I got a one-day pass, 'Baz' (McCullum) said," Burns told cricket.com.au after play. "So I have to try and do it again next game."
First rule of “Bash Brothers” NEVER invite yourself into the “Bash Brothers” @joeburns441— Brendon McCullum (@Bazmccullum) December 21, 2017
On a Network Ten live cross, Lynn wasn't so sure.
"He went all right tonight but we've got a 'no weirdo' policy, so he doesn't quite make the cut," he said with a grin. "Not quite, Burnsy. I reckon he's got a few (runs) to go."
Ultimately, the jury remains very much undecided, though Burns certainly gets extra points for persistence, and also the final word.
"I'm the cool one – I like to think I'm quirky, so I bring a little bit of quirkiness to the group," he grinned.
"I think I'm already a Bash Brother. I've been in Baz's ear from day one. So yeah I guess I just have to swing harder. Baz keeps saying I need to hit more sixes rather than twos – Bash Brothers don't hit twos."
Burns will have a scan today after tweaking his groin during his innings, and will join the Heat squad on Friday in Melbourne for Saturday's match against the Renegades if deemed to fit to play.
McCullum, however, is expected to play despite bruising his little finger.
"There's a little bit of a niggle but it doesn't feel too bad," Burns said of his groin. "But it's how you wake up the day after a game that is a better indicator."
Lynn's return is likely to be pushed back a week and he is unlikely to feature against the Renegades as he battles a hamstring soreness.
Lynn was a late scratching from the Heat's side for Wednesday's win against the Melbourne Stars at the Gabba. The hamstring complaint is likely to keep him on ice for the clash with the Renegades, with a return at the Gabba next Wednesday the more likely scenario.