MELBOURNE: Perth Scorchers huffed and puffed in a modest chase but eventually prevailed in the Big Bash League game against Melbourne Renegades at the Docklands Stadium in Melbourne on Friday to move to the top of the points table.
Mitchell Johnson and Andrew Tye picked up six wickets between them to restrict Renegades to 130 for 9. David Willey and Michael Klinger then guided Scorchers in the chase before a collapse resulted in the visitors losing six wickets for 47 runs. However, they managed to cross the line with an over to spare, with Ashton Turner scoring a six off the last ball of the penultimate over. Opting to bowl, Johnson helped Scorchers make early inroads as he bagged the wickets of Aaron Finch and Cameron White in successive overs. A half-century stand between Tom Cooper and Marcus Harris revived Renegades and provided them a platform to forge a competitive total. However, Tye ensured that the partnership did not flourish for a longer time, striking timber when Cooper attempted to play across the line. The departure of Harris a short while later, out leg-before to Ashton Agar, meant that the stage had to be relaid all over again.
But regular wickets thwarted Renegades’ attempt to finish with a good total. Johnson sent back the experienced Brad Hodge in his final over, reducing the hosts to 92 for 5. Jhye Richardson and Tye extended the good bowling job into the death overs, with the latter picking up three or more wickets for the third time on the trot to reach the milestone of 50 wickets in the BBL.
Klinger, the veteran batsman, went about in a controlled manner at the start of the chase, happy to play second fiddle to David Willey in a 58-run opening stand. The partnership came to an end in the over after powerplay as Willey was bowled by another veteran – Brad Hogg – who also accounted for Agar to finish with fine figures of 2 for 16. Afghanistan Mohammad Nabi bowled an economical spell, which included the wicket of Klinger. Needing 14 to win off the last three overs, Scorchers were given further scare with the dismissals of Josh Inglis and Richardson.