Super Sixers win back-to-back titles
A stunning display with the ball is backed up by a classy chase as the Sixers defeat the Scorchers for the second consecutive season
4 February 2018, 02:55 PM AEST
The score: Perth Scorchers 99 (Cleary 18, Villani 16; Coyte 3-17) lost to Sydney Sixers 1-100 (Healy 41, Perry 36no; Emma King 1-26) by nine wickets with 30 balls to spare
Match in a tweet: Sixers go back-to-back! A stunning display with the ball is backed up with the bat as the Sixers claim the #WBBL03 title!
The hero: What a return it has been from Sarah Coyte! The seamer wasn’t even in the Sixers’ squad until the final two games of the regular season but she stepped up with 3-17 in the final. After Ellyse Perry, Ashleigh Gardner, Sarah Aley and Kim Garth put on the squeeze during the power play to restrict the Scorchers to 0-22 after six overs, it was Coyte who made the breakthrough, deceiving tournament leading run-scorer Elyse Villani with a slower ball, with wicketkeeper Alyssa Healy doing the rest of the work.
She returned later in the innings to trap New Zealand import Thamsyn Newton lbw, before her change in pace did for Heather Graham, bowling the allrounder. The former Australian seamer walked away from the game in early 2017, announcing her retirement from domestic cricket to focus on her mental health. The former Strikers player moved home to Sydney and was playing club cricket when Sixers coach Ben Sawyer approached her about a short comeback stint as a replacement player for departed Protea Marizanne Kapp. Coyte agreed and her return has been nothing short of astonishing, with 10 wickets in four matches.
The squeeze: Coyte topped the wicket-taking, but it was a superb all-round performance from the Sixers bowlers. They restricted the dangerous Scorchers opening pair of Villani and Nicole Bolton and once the first wickets fell, they never let up the pressure. From 0-23, Perth fell to 4-41 and none of their big guns were unable to fire, with Villani (17), Bolton (5), Nat Sciver (2) all out cheaply. Erin Burns collected 2-26, while Perry (1-9), Aley (1-19) and Garth (1-7) were also among the wickets.
The support act: Their bowlers ensured the chase was a small one, but Sixers openers Alyssa Healy and Ellyse Perry ensured the result was never in doubt. Healy was particularly impressive scoring 41 from 32 deliveries including five fours and one six, while Perry held up the other end, scoring 36 from 42.
When Healy went out, Ashleigh Gardner put her concussion worries behind her and took on Scorchers quick Katherine Brunt, clearing the boundary with a superb six before finishing unbeaten on 22.
The consolation effort: There wasn’t a lot for the Scorchers to smile about on a tough day at Adelaide Oval, but young quick Piepa Cleary added some important runs with the bat, finding the boundary twice in an unbeaten 18.
The moment: The pressure built up during the power play and it resulted in a huge wicket of Villani in the seventh over, with Alyssa Healy showing off her lightning-fast skills to execute a snappy stumping.
The finish: Sixers captain Ellyse Perry was forced to watch on from the sidelines in WBBL|02 as her team took the final, with the allrounder suffering a serious hamstring injury. This year, Perry was out in the middle to strike the winning runs!
The fantasy wrap: Ashleigh Gardner topped the charts with 107 points, followed by Alyssa Healy (100) and Sarah Coyte (89).