WBBL wrap: Blockbuster semi-finals locked in
The Perth Scorchers and Sydney Thunder secured the final two spots in the WBBL|06 semi-finals in an entertaining conclusion to the regular season
22 November 2020, 05:27 PM AEST
The finalists for Rebel WBBL|06 have been locked in after a thrilling final day of the regular season that was highlighted by a century to Sydney Sixers star Alyssa Healy.
The Melbourne Stars, who have qualified for the finals for the first time in six seasons, will face the Perth Scorchers in the first semi-final on Wednesday night before the Brisbane Heat – who are aiming for a hat-trick of title wins – will face the Sydney Thunder on Thursday night.
Locked and loaded for the #WBBLFinals 😎 pic.twitter.com/KOMXq0V8YQ— Rebel Women's Big Bash League (@WBBL) November 22, 2020
This season’s winner will be decided in the final on Saturday night.
The entire finals series will be played at North Sydney Oval with live coverage on the Seven Network, Foxtel, Kayo Sports and ABC Radio. Tickets info at cricket.com.au/tickets.
Semi Final 1: Melbourne Stars v Perth Scorchers | Wednesday November 25, 7:10pm AEDT
Semi Final 2: Brisbane Heat v Sydney Thunder | Thursday November 26, 7:10pm AEDT
Final: TBC v TBC | Saturday November 28, 7:10pm AEDT
Sydney Sixers beat Melbourne Stars by five wickets with two balls remaining (DLS Method)
Sydney Sixers’ distant hopes of claiming the enormous win they needed to make the WBBL semi-finals were dashed by a Meg Lanning masterclass at North Sydney Oval.
Alyssa Healy struck a brilliant 48-ball century to lead the Sixers to a five-wicket consolation win over the ladder-leading Stars, but they remained fifth on the ladder, missing the finals for a second consecutive year.
After the Scorchers’ shock defeat earlier in the day opened a narrow window into the top four, the Sixers were still left with the unlikely task of needing to chase whatever target they were set in around six overs.
Lanning’s 59-ball 77 put paid to those hopes, as she helped her team to 4-178 from a reduced 19 overs, their highest total of the season.
That target was revised to 184 under the Duckworth Lewis Stern method, and while even Healy was not capable of pulling off the net run rate boost required, she ensured an entertaining afternoon for the sell-out crowd of Sixers fans as she struck a 52-ball 111, including six sixes.
Her onslaught was ended by 17-year-old Stars pacer Tess Flintoff, who then bowled Marizanne Kapp for a duck.
Having lost four wickets in 10 balls if was left to Ange Reakes to rally for the Sixers and she duly delivered, hitting an unbeaten 21 from 12 balls to see her team home with three balls to spare.
The Stars, meanwhile, will be searching for a way to regain momentum after losing their final two regular season matches.
After electing to set the Sixers a target, Lanning shared a 79-run opening stand with Elyse Villani (45 from 28) before bringing up her sixth half-century of the season.
The Sixers had no answers for the Australian and Stars skipper who unleashed two superb sixes, while Natalie Sciver’s 32 from 13 put the finishing touches on a mammoth total that helped finish off the Sixers’ season.
Brisbane Heat beat Melbourne Renegades by 43 runs (DLS Method)
Brisbane Heat will take plenty of momentum into the WBBL semi-finals after thrashing the Melbourne Renegades by 43 runs (DLS Method) at Drummoyne Oval, their seventh consecutive victory.
After scrapping their way to 6-144 from a reduced 17 overs in their rain-affected innings, the Heat ripped through the Renegades for 76 runs in 16.2 overs.
Georgia Prestwidge (4-12), Jess Jonassen (2-6) and Amelia Kerr (2-24) did the damage with the ball, while Amy Satterthwaite and Courtney Webb top-scored for the Renegades with 14 apiece.
Delissa Kimmince removed Lizelle Lee with the first ball of the innings, before a double strike from Prestwidge removed debutante Rebecca Carter (2) and Josie Dooley (4) in the space of five balls.
Earlier, Kerr led the way with the bat for the Heat, striking an unbeaten 35 from 26 deliveries.
She was assisted by Georgia Voll’s 20, after top-order batters Grace Harris (3), Georgia Redmayne (10) and Jonassen (16) were dismissed cheaply.
Sydney Thunder beat Hobart Hurricanes by six wickets
Sydney Thunder have secured their place in the WBBL finals with a six-wicket victory over the Hobart Hurricanes at Drummoyne Oval.
Requiring 116 to cement their semi-final berth, the Thunder produced a clinical chase, with captain Rachael Haynes (4) the only batter to miss out as Tammy Beaumont (22), Rachel Trenaman (16) and Heather Knight (25) all made contributions.
Phoebe Litchfield (24no) and Sammy-Jo Johnson (16no) then saw their team home with 19 balls remaining.
The Thunder are now four points clear of the fifth-ranked Sydney Sixers and cannot drop out of the top four, although they will need to wait on the result of matches between the Scorchers and Strikers, and Heat and Renegades, to learn their semi-final opponent.
Earlier, Shabnim Ismail (3-10) ripped through the Hurricanes top-order to leave them in disarray at 3-4 in the third over, with star internationals Nicola Carey (0), Hayley Matthews (0) and Chloe Tryon (1) all back in the sheds.
Opener Rachel Priest (32 off 37) set about the repair job with Sasha Moloney (39 off 28), adding 57 for the fourth wicket, before a second collapse saw Hobart lose 3-4 in the space of eight deliveries.
Captain Corinne Hall added a late flurry with an unbeaten 24 off 18, carrying the Hurricanes to 9-115.
Hannah Darlington’s impressive tournament continued as she picked up 3-24, but there was a worrying moment for the Thunder when in-form spinner Sam Bates was forced from the field after an awkward fall while attempting to field off her own bowling.
She did not return to bowl her final over, with a Thunder spokesperson confirming she was being assessed with an update expected later on Sunday.
Adelaide Strikers beat Perth Scorchers by three runs
A dramatic batting collapse from the Perth Scorchers left the door ajar for an unlikely Sydney Sixers’ charge towards the finals.
A win to the Scorchers would have sealed their semi-final berth and the Perth club looked to be charging towards their target of 160 at 0-118 in the 14th over.
However, after Sophie Devine was caught behind for a 42-ball 57, the Scorchers stuttered.
Fellow opener Beth Mooney was caught for a 48-ball 60, and Amy Jones (4) and Chloe Piparo (2) fell cheaply.
The Scorchers lost 5-20 in the space of four overs, and with nine runs required from the final six deliveries, Sarah Coyte’s brilliant death bowling leaked just five runs, restricting Perth to 7-156 and sealing a narrow win.
It gave the Sydney Sixers a sniff of leapfrogging their way into fourth, but they needed to defeat the top-ranked Melbourne Stars be a massive margin.
Earlier, Amanda-Jade Wellington was the hero with the bat for the Strikers, smacking five fours and two sixes in a 25-ball 48, while Katie Mack (32 off 20) and Laura Wolvaardt (37 off 32) also impressed.