Perth Scorchers ended a stunning bottom-up recovery in the Big Bash League after beating the Melbourne Stars in a MCG victory last night with bonus points.
The Scorchers ’eighth win in their last nine games has lifted them over the Sydney Sixers in the standings thanks to net speed, even though the Sixers have two more games.
Perth will face the Brisbane Heat in the Adelaide Oval on Australia Day to round out their regular season.
If the Hot Scorchers rank in the top two, they will play in Saturday’s qualifiers for the right straight into the decision at home, which will be next Saturday.
Even if Perth, who were without a win after four games and finished third or fourth in last place, will earn the right to host the final at Optus Stadium.
The Scorchers had a lot of co-workers as th = ey won with 11 runs, they also picked up a Bash Boost point for the lead in the 10-over rating.
Despite placing a few simple catches on the field, they held on to 6-171 in pursuit of 183 home runs.
Nick Larkin (70 of 44) scored the highest score in the All-Star Game but had no support as Jason Behrendorff (1-19) and Andrew Tye (2-28) stood up with the ball.
Behrendorff knocked down a girl in the fourth half of the bocce goalkeeper when he claimed the large scalp of muscular opener Marcus Stoinis (14 with 11 balls).
When Fawad Ahmed hit Glenn Maxwell with his first ball for a duck, the Stars dropped to 3-42 in the round of 16 and faced an ascent.
Key Stars bowlers Nathan Coulter-Nile (1-49) and Adam Zampa (1-48) gave up nearly 100 runs each other as the Scorchers scored another awesome 4-182 overall.
It was a steady performance as confident Jason Roy set the tone with a confident 54 with 32 balls ahead of Colin Munro (46 without 30) and Josh Inglis (26 of 16) to regain momentum.
The stars played with an introductory performance for Zampa, who was greeted with two fours and sixes from his first three balls from Roy.
Roy and Liam Livingstone took 19 from the first end of Zampa, a third of the innings, and ranked 0-42 from a new four-ball power game that had three overtakes.
The opening partnership came to a halt at age 83 when less than the current Livingstone (24 with 29 balls) killed Zahirk Khan into the depths of the tenth end.
The innings began to change as Roya’s next game slowed Boulter-Nile’s rebound and fell to Maxwell’s well-judged catch.
A double hit slowed down Perth’s driving speed, which slipped below eight and over before Munro and Inglis called Power Surge after 14 overs.
The pair hit the gas from a successful surge to 28 steps, each hitting a disappointed Coulter-Nile six times as they took 20 from the field up.