Scorchers seal spot in their first WBBL final after cruising to a big semi-final win over the Brisbane Heat
The match in a tweet: Brisbane scorched in the west! Villani and Bolton's rapid opening stand ensure the Scorchers pass the Heat's 5-124 with 26 balls to spare
The score: Brisbane Heat 5-124 (Short 39, King 2-17) in 20 overs lost to Perth Scorchers 1-125 (Villani 52no, Bolton 36) in 15.4 overs by nine wickets
The hero: Elyse Villani came to the party in the semi-final making light work of the Heat's 5-124. The Southern Stars opener put the Heat bowlers under the pump from the outset, hitting three boundaries in the first 11 balls she faced. Villani's dazzling stroke play was a treat to watch as she plundered eight boundaries in her knock of 52no from 48 balls. Importantly for the Scorchers, she remained at the crease to guide the Scorchers into the WBBL final.
The support cast: Piepa Cleary and Emma King did an admirable job to reel the Heat back in after Beth Mooney and Kirby Short raced along to 0-22 after three overs. Bowling in tandem for the next four overs the Scorchers pair conceded just 12 runs and picked up the prized wicket of Mooney. Cleary's ability to execute the yorker as the Heat tried to up the tempo through the middle overs was brilliant to watch. Between them, Cleary and King finished with figures of 8-0-35-3 including 21 dot balls.
The consolation act: Kirby Short led from the front with a composed innings of 39 from 49 balls. Hitting a boundary from the first ball she faced, Short got the Heat away to brisk start by adding 22 in the first three overs of the match. The right-hander struggled at times through the middle overs to up the tempo, but she stuck to her task by not giving her wicket away. She finally broke the shackles later in the innings by striking two crisp boundaries but sadly for Short, the Heat were at least 20 runs short.
The innings: Nicole Bolton continued her splendid form by getting the Scorchers off to a flying start and in the process easing the pressure of chasing in a semi-final. The left-hander shred the Heat bowlers to pieces with gorgeous drives that pierced the tight off-side field on a consistent basis. Bolton shared a blistering 67-run opening stand with Villani to lay the foundation for a Scorchers victory.
The run out: Bolton was racing away, but her innings came to an end when this outstanding piece of work from Heat allrounder Jess Jonassen proved simply too quick!
The wash-up: It's season over for the Heat, who will be disappointed with their performance in the semi-final but should be satisfied with the season given two of their international stars in Dottin and Holly Ferling missed the majority of the season. Perth, meanwhile, have flexed their muscles and will be difficult to beat in the final.
Tomorrow's second WBBL semi-final between the Sixers and Hurricanes will be broadcast live and free on ONE, while a live stream is available at cricket.com.au and on the Cricket Australia Live app.