The WBBL semi-finals are set, and the Sydney Sixers will take on the Melbourne Renegades, and the Sydney Thunder will take on the Brisbane Heat, with both matches at Drummoyne Oval on Saturday.
Melbourne Renegades v Hobart Hurricanes
The Renegades secured their place in the finals by defeating bottom feeders Hobart in a tightly contested encounter in St Kilda.
Satterthwaite was the star for Melbourne, hitting 66 off 57 in her most important knock of the tournament, while Duffin provided support with 30 off 22. With Molineux and Wyatt also having played crucial knocks for the Renegades recently, their top order looks to be in good form heading into the finals.
CLUTCH! @SophieMolineux1 pic.twitter.com/6R7IVFtpeP— Rebel Women's Big Bash League (@WBBL) January 12, 2019
Alex Hartley picked up 3/21 off four overs, including Wyatt for a golden duck.
It was a strange chase from Hobart, who looked to have the match in the bag after a strong start from Mandhana (26 off 26) and Erin Fazackerley (52 off 41) but ended up falling three runs short after a flow of wickets at the end halted their momentum.
Lea Tahuhu proved tough to get away, taking 1/18 off her four overs. Going into the final over, Hobart needed nine to win, but Molly Strano held her nerve with the ball and Melbourne got over the line.
Brisbane Heat v Sydney Thunder
The Heat won the semi-final preview on the back of a classic Beth Mooney century.
How good is this!!! 🙌#BringTheHeat #WBBL04 pic.twitter.com/RvRtqh95LZ— Brisbane Heat WBBL (@HeatWBBL) January 12, 2019
The Thunder’s innings was anchored by Rachael Haynes, who batted 18 overs for her 57 off 51 while other batters teed off around her. Rachel Priest started the trend by smashing a nine-ball 21, while Stefanie Taylor slogged 43 off 23 to end the innings.
From there, it was the Mooney show, as they Heat and Australian opener put a lean season behind her with a maiden WBBL century. Her century came off just 55 deliveries and included 14 fours and a six.
Harmanpreet Kaur went from hero to villain within the space of two overs. She dismissed Mooney in the seventeenth over, which looked to put the Thunder in the box seat, but then conceded 13 runs in the nineteenth over, leaking two fours and bowling a costly no ball.
The Heat will take plenty of confidence out of this victory going into Saturday’s semi-final, but the Thunder will be confident too, knowing that if they can get Mooney and Grace Harris out early, they’re a massive chance of dismissing the Heat for a low total.