T20 Big Bash League - KFC

Scorchers Knock Off Premiers

16/12/2012 21:50 PM

The Perth Scorchers have returned to winning ways after posting a seven wicket victory over reigning KFC T20 Big Bash League premiers Sydney Sixers at the SCG on Sunday night.

The Scorchers got the better of their conquerors from last season's BIG FINAL following a brilliant bowling performance, reducing the hosts to 6-28 before they scrambled their way to 9-113 from their 20 overs.

New recruit Alfonso Thomas (2-27 from four overs) impressed with his variety of pace, while Michael Beer (2-19 from four) and Nathan Coulter-Nile (1-9 from four) caused the Sixers no end of problems.

Herschelle Gibbs (40 off 42 deliveries) played a leading role in the run chase with a steady knock, combining well with Shaun Marsh (26 off 32) and Marcus North (23 off 34), before skipper Simon Katich and Hilton Cartwright finished the job with four balls to spare.

The result was the perfect response for the Scorchers following Wednesday's disappointing loss to Melbourne Stars as they earned their first triumph of the new season, while it also ended the Sixers' 12-game T20 winning run.

After a tidy opening over from Thomas, the Scorchers claimed a wicket in each of the next five overs to have the Sixers on the ropes at 5-18. Beer had opener Dan Smith caught, before Moises Henriques chased a wide delivery from Thomas and nicked it to wicket-keeper Tom Triffitt.

Spinner Beer got the important wicket of Sixers skipper Brad Haddin in the next over, caught by Marsh at point for ten. Steve Smith gloved a Coulter-Nile leg-side delivery to Triffitt for a duck, before Marsh brilliantly ran out Sri Lankan left-hander Jeevan Mendis.

Brad Hogg bamboozled Dominic Thornely with a wrong'un which saw him stumped for five, making it 6-28 in the 10th over.

From there the Sixers did well to reach triple figures with Ian Moran hitting two boundaries off ,Cartwright's next over. Triffitt dropped a simple catch from Moran off the unlucky Coulter-Nile, before Steve O'Keefe took over with an important 29 off 34 balls.

Cartwright (2-41 off four) would dismiss both Moran and O'Keefe, while Brett Lee played a key role at the death, hitting 22 off 15 balls, including two big sixes, to guide his side to 9-113.

In response, Marsh hit the opening ball from Lee for a boundary but the Scorchers were more intent on taking it slow as they tried to get through the first period of the innings with all wickets in tact.

Henriques dropped a tough catch off Gibbs in the third over, before Marsh brought up the Scorchers' fifty with a lovely sweep shot for four.

Shortly after Marsh was caught by Dan Smith off Mendis for 26. North came to the crease and looked troubled by Sunil Narine and Mendis, however he worked hard to keep his wicket, using the reverse sweep to good effect.

Gibbs began to hit out but received a huge slice of luck when dropped by Thornely and Lee in successive balls, before a big boundary on the final ball of the 16th over took the Scorchers to 1-95.

The South African was bowled by Luke Feldman for 40 with the score at 100 and when North followed him soon after, the situation became slightly tense for the Scorchers, needing 12 from 11 balls to win.

However Katich belted his first ball for six to ease the tension, while Cartwright played his part, before the skipper hit the winning run off Feldman in the final over.

The Scorchers will attempt to improve their KFC T20 Big Bash League record to two wins and two losses on Tuesday when they take on Brisbane Heat at the Gabba.

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