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Warriors knock over Blues

Western Australia has kicked off their Twenty20 Big Bash campaign with a 26-run victory over New South Wales in Perth.

The home team cruised to victory with the Blues unable to reach the 195-run target off their 20 overs. Adam Voges, recently recruited into the Australian camp, top scored with an unbeaten 74 runs off 45 balls, while NSW opener Phil Jaques impressed with 69 off 38 balls.

Brad Hogg spun a web on the Blues by snaring three wickets, finishing with 3-19 off his four over allotment, while pace bowler Sean Ervine also claimed three scalps.

Earlier, New South Wales captain Simon Katich won the toss and elected to field first. With the nature of Twenty20 Cricket, the Warriors openers wasted little time in powering to the first 50 off just 20 balls.

Luke Ronchi took a liking to Nathan Bracken’s bowling, smashing every ball of his second over to the fence, a whopping 24 runs off the third over of the innings.

Two balls after the Warriors reached fifty, the first of four dismissals fell when Ronchi attempted to whack Tim Lang’s bowling over the fence only to find Scott Coyte at mid-on.

Scott Meuleman and Voges pushed the Warriors total over 100 in the eighth over with both swinging the bat lustily, pulling a ball each over the mid wicket fence.

However, the introduction of spinner Nathan Hauritz from the Prindiville Stand end saw the demise of Meuleman, bowled around his legs.

At the halfway mark, the Warriors had 200-plus in their sights with an impressive 2-119 off 10 overs. Marcus North’s brave knock was ended abruptly in the 11th over, stumped by Haddin after advancing down the track.

The runs then dried up with the twin spin of Hauritz and Aaron O’Brien restricting the lofty shots. The return of pace from Coyte in the 16th over saw the return of the lusty blows as Voges drove straight for six to bring up his half-century and the Warriors 150 off just 98 balls.

Voges and David Bandy edged their team closer to 200, however had to settle for 4-194 when the 20 overs were up. O’Brien was the best of the NSW bowlers with 2-25 off four overs.

The Blues reply began with a wide from Brett Dorey. Jaques hoisted the following ball to the wide mid-off fence, while opening partner Ed Cowan was run out by rookie Theo Doropoulos after Jaques had pushed hard for two in the third over.

Jaques recovered the innings and took to the bowlers with Haddin patiently watching on at the other end. The NSW 50 was posted in the sixth over when Jaques lofted Ben Edmondson over the mid-wicket fence.

Just like Voges, Jaques reached his own fifty (off 28 balls) with his fourth shot that cleared the rope, this time he pulled over deep square leg.

Brad Hogg’s introduction, like Hauritz, provided immediate results with Haddin sending the ball skywards and down to Dorey at long on. Katich and Jaques took the Blues total past 100 at the start of the 11th over before the Blues opener was stumped attempting a reverse sweep.

Two balls later, Hogg snared the trump card player Dominic Thornely without scoring that left NSW at 4-102. Daniel Christian tried to put his team into a winning position with two blows over mid-wicket, however a third attempt of the same stroke saw his downfall as Doropoulos claimed an easy catch.

Katich pushed the Blues total past 150 before O’Brien returned to the pavilion, caught at fine leg by Darren Wates. Ervine went close to claiming a hat trick, snaring the scalp of Katich who was closely followed by Bracken.

Hauritz hit out in the last over, and was unbeaten after the 20 overs were bowled, however it wasn’t enough as the NSW Blues finished short on 8-168.

Both teams are in action again later this week, Western Australia hosts South Australia on Thursday night in Perth, while Queensland plays host to New South Wales on Friday night in Brisbane.

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source - sportsaustralia.com

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