The WBBL is well and truly underway after eight matches were completed over the weekend.
Melbourne Renegades v Adelaide Strikers
The Renegades overcame the Strikers on the last ball of the match in what was the match of the round.
After winning the toss and electing to bat, skipper Suzie Bates combined with countrywoman Sophie Devine to put on 86 runs for the first wicket. While Bates showed off her ability to score quickly and access all areas of the ground, Devine was unable to get out of first gear and struggled to find the middle of the bat in her 43 balls at the crease.
Tahlia McGrath came in and had a more than handy cameo of 33 off 20 at first drop, but after that the Strikers’ innings halted and their thin middle order was exposed. Amanda-Jade Wellington is perhaps one spot too high at number five, and Adelaide might want to consider playing another batter in future matches.
With momentum firmly in their favour, the Renegades came out to bat as slight favourites. Danni Wyatt continued a good round for the Englishwomen, joining compatriots Amy Jones and Heather Knight with a half century of her own. Her innings was the catalyst for the Renegades, and as wickets fell around her, she set up the game perfectly for the middle order.
Unfortunately, she fell right when her side needed her to keep accelerating, but Claire Koski and Erica Kershaw picked up the pieces, putting on 62 runs to overhaul Adelaide’s total. It came down to the last over, though, with Melbourne needing eight to win and Sophie Devine having ball in hand.
Devine bowled brilliantly until the last ball, which allowed Claire Koski to launch a boundary to square leg to seal an incredible win for her team.
One of the highlights of the match was Wareham and Wellington’s duel that showed the embarrassment of riches Australia have when it comes to leg spin, with Wareham taking 2/20 and Wellington 3/27.
The next day both teams ventured to Ballarat to play the second half of the double header. Unfortunately, match two turned out to be a massive letdown compared to first match as rain interrupted play.
Adelaide changed tactics with the ball, opening with Dani Hazell’s off-spin. It worked perfectly. She conceded just three runs an over and put plenty of pressure on Melbourne’s batters.
One thing for certain is that Adelaide’s deep and versatile bowling line-up will be extremely difficult for opponents to deal with.
Duckworth-Lewis set Adelaide 78 from 11 overs, but they only got through 4.3 overs before the rain came and ended the match, ruining what was shaping up to be a fascinating contest between two strong, evenly matched team.