Tigers hold on to claim thrilling victory
The Tasmanian Tigers held on to record their third KFC t20 Big Bash victory of the tournament thanks to a thrilling 2 run win over the Speedblitz Blues at Stadium Australia in Sydney.
Faced with a run chase of 153 the game went down to the final over as Ben Rohrer and Steve O’Keefe looked to seal a dramatic victory for the Blues.
With just six deliveries remaining the pair needed to score another 18 runs but Naved-ul-Hasan remained calm to seal victory for the Tigers despite conceding a massive six off the first ball of the final over.
The Blues got off to the perfect start thanks to David Warner (38) and Usman Khawaja (33) who put on an opening stand of 69 as the Blues took control of the game.
Warner took full advantage of the shortened boundaries inside Stadium Australia as the opener smashed 4 fours and 2 sixes, one less then the entire Tigers team managed in their innings.
With the pressure mounting on the Tigers bowlers, Jason Krejza made the vital break through to remove Warner who was caught by substitute fielder Brendan Drew out on the long on boundary in the 9th over.
With the loss of Warner the Blues suffered a batting collapse as Philip Hughes (3), Khawaja and Peter Nevill (0) were all dismissed within the space of 9 deliveries as the home side slumped to 78-4.
Despite the loss of three quick wickets Moises Henriques (19) and Ben Rohrer () remained calm as they built a 5th wicket partnership of 41 which kept the Blues in the hunt.
With the game looking to go to the wire the partnership was broken by James Faulkner who removed Henriques in the 18th to leave the Blues needing another 34 runs from just 14 deliveries.
Rohrer hit back immediately dispatching Faulkner’s next delivery for a massive six over midwicket to set up a thrilling final two overs as the home side almost pulled off a stunning victory.
Having won the toss the Tigers lost Jonathan Wells (18) and Rhett Lockyear (7) in the space of just 3 deliveries in the 4th over thanks to 17 years old Pat Cummins who struck twice on debut.
Despite the early setback Tigers skipper George Bailey and Travis Brit lead the recovery with a 3rd wicket stand of 54 as the visitors took control of the game.
With the pair settled at the crease Blues skipper Stuart Clarke brought Moises Henriques into the attack in the 10th over as the home side searched for a breakthrough.
Henriques; who’s been expensive throughout this year’s Big Bash took just 3 deliveries to break the partnership after Bailey (27) was caught by David Warner out on the long on boundary.
With Bailey gone Brit was now joined at the crease by Dutch import Ryan ten Doeschate and the pair added a quick fire 49 from just 5 overs before ten Doeschate was dismissed by Henriques to leave the Tigers 130-4.
Brit (47) quickly followed after he became Cummins third wicket of the night as the 17 year olds amazing debut continued for the Blues.
With Brit gone Jason Krejza (8) offered little resistant’s before Mark Cosgrove (8) and Naved-ul-Hasan (4) added 6 runs during a last over partnership to help increase the Tigers total to 152-6.