Sydney Thunder registered their first victory in the ongoing Big Bash League (BBL) 2020-21 after they defeated Brisbane Heat by 4 wickets in a thrilling encounter at Manuka Oval in Canberra on Monday.
Chasing a challenging target of 179, Thunder had a dreadful start as they lost their top-3 batsmen on 22 runs. Opener Alex Hales and skipper Callum Ferguson went for a duck while senior lad Usman Khawaja was sent back to the dugout on 17. Queensland all-rounder Jack Wildermuth took all the three wickets.
Then Alex Ross (34) and Baxter Holt (23) tried to stabilize the innings by adding a crucial stand of 49 runs for the fourth wicket. Matthew Kuhnemann and Mujeeb Ur Rahman brought Heat back into the game after they dismissed both the set batters.
It looked like the Heat would capitalize from this situation, but Ben Cutting and Daniel Sams had some other plans. The duo put together a vital partnership of 69 runs for the sixth wicket.
Cutting was cleaned up by Mark Steketee in the 18th over, but Sams held his end and kept on scoring boundaries until he took his side over the finish line. The 28-year-old played a blistering knock of unbeaten 65 runs off 25 deliveries with the help of seven sixes and three fours.
Chris Lynn drives Heat to 178/6
Earlier, Heat skipper Chris Lynn led the batting unit from the front after he smashed a sensational half-century and scored 69 runs off 44 deliveries. The right-handed batsman hammered runs at a blistering strike-rate of 156.82 laced up with eight boundaries, including five humungous sixes.
Apart from Lynn, Wildermuth and Max Bryant also made valuable contributions to take the team’s total 178/6 in their allotted 20 overs. Wildermuth slammed 11-ball 31 with the help of four sixes, while Bryant scored 29 off 23 balls.
For Thunder, Jonathan Cook and Sams bagged two wickets each. At the same time, Chris Green and Nathan McAndrew picked up one wicket apiece.
Here is how Twitter reacted:
A match-winning half-century.
— KFC Big Bash League (@BBL) December 14, 2020
— Erin Holland (@erinvholland) December 14, 2020
Tanveer Sangha is going to be an absolute gun.
Fearless. Love the way he throws it up. #BBL10
— Tim Michell (@tim_michell) December 14, 2020
Daniel Sams the hero! I love him I wanna boof him get him up heeeerrre! #ThunderNation
— Josh Barnett 🇦🇺 (@v8tiger) December 14, 2020
And that’s as bad a bowling as I’ve ever seen in T/20 cricket from the Brisbane heat & horrific plans too – any chance of a wide yorker???? #BBL
— Shane Warne (@ShaneWarne) December 14, 2020
WHAT A GAME, WHAT A WIN, WHAT A KNOCK 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 #ThunderNation
Daniel Sams, Take a bow son 👏🏻👏🏻
— Scotty 🇦🇺 (@ScottLee80) December 14, 2020
Chris Lynn goes for a well made 69 in 44 balls, he's the David Warner of the Big Bash League, can score consistent runs for the Brisbane Heat.
— Mufaddal Vohra (@mufaddal_vohra) December 14, 2020
Chris Lynn Completed his fifty in just 31 balls with 4 Sixes and 2 fours. #BBL10
— CricketMAN2 (@man4_cricket) December 14, 2020
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) December 14, 2020
Incredible smashing from Daniel Sams. Never seen him hit the ball this hard, scoring 65 off 25 balls with 7 huge sixes. What a win for Sydney Thunder after reeling at 80 for 5 midway. #BBL10
— Siddarth Srinivas (@sidhuwrites) December 14, 2020
Daniel Sams was brilliant, Ben Laughlin less so… https://t.co/gdxUWQKgAB
— Rick Eyre on cricket (@rickeyrecricket) December 14, 2020
Daniel Sams. That’s it. That’s the tweet
— Harrison (@indepthFandC) December 14, 2020
Ultimate batting by Daniel sams #sydneythunder
— Dinesh Kumar (@Rowdyfan_Dinesh) December 14, 2020
the western sydney thunder are perfect
— James Colley (@JamColley) December 14, 2020
Sydney thunder are the favorites, I have faith but not that much faith.
— Stephen Crichton Enthusiast (@zampaa69) December 14, 2020