Hurricanes stun Sixers as Qais flips the script
Hobart's Afghan spin sensation takes four wickets to steer his side to remarkable comeback win in Alice Springs
20 December 2019, 05:19 PM AEST
The match in a tweet: Script flipped! Qais skittles the Sixers to save the Canes in sweltering Alice Springs #BBL09
The Score: Hobart Hurricanes 9-129 (Short 51; Abbott 3-20) beat Sydney Sixers 104 (Philippe 24; Qais 4-12) by 25 runs
The Hero: Qais Ahmad! He impressed last summer, but nothing quite like this. It's fair to say another awesome Afghan has been unearthed. Read on to find out the spectacular details.
The Supporting Cast: D'Arcy Short was as reliable as ever for the Hurricanes, hitting his 13th BBL fifty to get his side off to a strong start. The left-hander is a Northern Territory native and appeared to be thriving in the Alice Springs heat until coming unstuck on 51 from 40 deliveries. He then backed it up with three good catches in the outfield.
The Consolation Act: Abbott is as consistent with the ball as Short is with the bat. The right-armer is an incumbent in Australia's T20I squad and now a part of the ODI squad as well, and he showed why here as he stuck to a disciplined line and length and picked up 3-20 to restrict the Hurricanes. Ben Manenti also deserves a mention; the offie opened the bowling, removed Short and Ben McDermott, then made an impressive 22 (28) from No.10 to give the Sixers some hope until the very end.
The Big Moment: Qais had taken one wicket already and celebrated relatively mildly with arms spread wide. But he ramped it up a notch with his second when, after bowling Tom Curran with a sharp leg break, he pulled out the front flip for which he is renowned. It was the first time it has been seen in the Big Bash and it precipitated a crazy over…
The Big Over: What started with the wicket of Curran was followed next ball by the stumping of Abbott. Two balls later, Qais knocked over Ben Dwarshuis to make it three in four. Just like that, the Sixers were 8-61, Qais had 4-5 (he finished with 4-12) and the match was Hobart's to lose.
The collapse: Before and during the Qais carnage, the Sixers lost an incredible 7-13.
The Banter: As well as brilliant leg-spin, it was comedy capers from the Afghan, Qais, who kicked one ball past his own teammate in the field, executed a brilliant run-out, smashed a six and then was clean bowled trying to hit one back to Hobart!
Turns out Qais Ahmad has more tricks than just the backflip! But seriously Qais... a backflip later on would be really great #BBL09 pic.twitter.com/3MghKIcf4T— KFC Big Bash League (@BBL) December 20, 2019
The Stat: Abbott is the second-leading wicket-taker in Big Bash League history, with 89. Incredibly, today's dismissal James Faulkner was his first lbw.
The Next Stop: The Hurricanes make their way to Moe in country Victoria to take on Melbourne Stars on Sunday afternoon, while the Sixers host the Heat at the SCG that same night – their third game in five nights to begin their campaign.
.@HurricanesBBL XI: D'Arcy Short, Caleb Jewell, Ben McDermott (c), David Miller, George Bailey, Simon Milenko, James Faulkner, Nathan Ellis, Qais Ahmad, Clive Rose, Riley Meredith #BBL09— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) December 20, 2019
.@SixersBBL XI: Josh Philippe, Daniel Hughes, James Vince, Moises Henriques (c), Jordan Silk, Hayden Kerr, Tom Curran, Sean Abbott, Ben Dwarshuis, Ben Manenti, Lloyd Pope— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) December 20, 2019