The Simonds Stadium in Geelong witnessed a cracking game between Melbourne Renegades and Brisbane Heat, where the Renegades ended up winning with just four balls to spare.
Chasing 138, Renegades were in deep trouble after losing their four wickets for just 9 runs courtesy of Michael Neser’s outstanding bowling as he took all four wickets, including a hat-trick. The contest looked to be slipping out of the Renegades’ reach, but power striker Andre Russell had some other plans.
Russell went for the counterattack and took Heat’s bowlers to the cleaners, blasting a sensational half-century to bail out the Renegades. He added a crucial 81-run stand with veteran batter Aaron Finch to take his side closer to victory. The Caribbean giant smashed 57 runs from 42 deliveries with the help of 2 fours and 6 gigantic sixes before Mark Steketee dismissed him.
Akeal Hosein then came up with a quick-fire 19-ball 30 runs knock that featured two fours and as many sixes before losing his wicket in the penultimate over. Finch, however, stayed unbeaten at 31 and took his side over the finish line.
Earlier, Heat posted 137/8 in their allotted 20 overs, thanks to a vital knock by captain Jimmy Pierson. The wicketkeeper-batter scored an unbeaten 45 from 30 balls, including six fours, to take his side to a competitive total. For Renegades, Hosein bagged a three-wicket haul for 26 runs while Tom Rogers picked up four scalps for 23 runs in his quota of 4 overs.
Here is how Twitter reacted:
— KFC Big Bash League (@BBL) December 21, 2022
— Melbourne Renegades (@RenegadesBBL) December 21, 2022
Proper cricket match & a contest in #BBL12 tonight. Neser's hat-trick, outstanding seam bowling overall, Andre Russell's six-hitting counter-attack, @AaronFinch5's experience in the chase + @7Cricket commentators calling. Top top broadcast!#CricketTwitter
— Arun Gopalakrishnan (@statanalyst) December 21, 2022
Huge Sixes. Lost balls. Wickets. A hat-trick. An action packed night of BBL entertainment goes the way of the ‘Gades.
— Brisbane Heat (@HeatBBL) December 21, 2022
— Lachlan McKirdy (@LMcKirdy7) December 21, 2022
Andre Russell knows how to swing a cricket bat lol, gets so much power #BBL12
— itsJesseB (@itsJesseB_) December 21, 2022
— FAIZ FAZEL (@theFaizFazel) December 21, 2022
Andre Russell God damn
— jooce. (@jooce8891) December 21, 2022
Melbourne Renegades win again 3 in a row, against Brisbane Heat at @GMHBAStadium🙂 Kardinia Park tonight,chasing 138 for victory.Aaron Finch brought it home after Andre Russell onslaught earlier player of the match 🙂 @RenegadesBBL @HeatBBL @BBL @AaronFinch5 @andrerussell_ #BBL12 pic.twitter.com/OquiBqHtcI
— Phillip Nicholls (@whoskill) December 21, 2022
Commentator overstating the importance of Finch's innings. Most of the credit should go to Andre Russell and the cameo by Akeal Hossein
— Dib Taleb (@86Dib) December 21, 2022