1. Bancroft is back in a big way.
A lack of solid batting partnerships has restricted the men in orange to low totals, with Sunday’s effort marking the first time in BBL|08 the Scorchers have notched up more than 150 runs. While Bancroft took a few games to find his feet at the highest level, his explosive 87 not out from 67 balls encapsulated his return to form – Big Hitting Bangers is Back! Looking at home in the middle the opener dominated the Sixers bowling attack, building partnerships with Sam Whiteman and Turner before wrapping up the win with his ninth boundary.
2. Some overs have six balls… and some have seven.
Strange things happen in cricket, but the controversy behind Maxy Klinger’s wicket baffled commentators and players alike. Klinger looked visibly frustrated by the decision, which Cricket Australia has deemed an “umpiring error” after he was caught off the seventh ball of the second over by Steve O’Keefe. According to rule 17.5 of BBL playing conditions, once a ball is bowled it is deemed live and any runs or wickets are valid. Fortunately for Ben Dwarshuis, he got the wicket. Unfortunately for Klinger, he was out.
3. It’s only halfway.
It wasn’t the greatest start to a season with only one win from the Scorchers first six outings, but with the extended 14-game season there’s a long road ahead. They may be second from the bottom of the ladder for now, but after two consecutive wins and a run of home games, the boys from the wild west are only one win (or two points) behind the second placed Sydney Sixers. With six games remaining and four of those at home, the Scorchers are down but certainly not out.
4. The importance of depth cannot be overlooked.
As the Australian summer moves from Test to white-ball cricket, many strong-performing BBL teams lose their best players to international duties. Joining Mitch and Shaun Marsh in Australian colours, spearheads Jhye Richardson and Jason Behrendorff were notable admissions from a side heavily reliant on the ball. The bowling attack took another blow with the late withdraw of Ashton Agar due to an ankle injury. Stepping up in their absence, Matt Kelly (2/32) took crucial wickets and debutant Cam Green held onto a superb catch to break the dangerous opening partnership for the Sixers, while Sam Whiteman (22 from 17) got the hosts off to a flyer with the bat. If the Scorchers are to make the semi-finals, these young guns will need to continue to step up in moments that matter.
5. Ashton Turner cannot be underrated any longer.
Scorchers fans have known it for years, but it seems the rest of the country is starting to take notice. Turner continued his stellar form on Sunday night, smashing 60 off just 30 deliveries in his fifth 40+ score in his last eight knocks. He earned a standing ovation from the euphoric Perth crowd, as the skipper departed at 3-163, with the Scorchers in a dominant position following a 98-run partnership with Bancroft. If Turner continues to dominate in Big Bash, his selection for the upcoming World Cup side looks imminent.