Chris Lynn continued to build a rock-solid case on Thursday night for national selection, with a lightning-quick Big Bash League half-century as the Brisbane Heat stunned the Melbourne Stars at the MCG.
The leading run-scorer of BBL05 bludgeoned five sixes in a row off one Ben Hilfenhaus over as he smashed 56 runs from 24 balls in the Heat’s innings of 7-188, before Samuel Badree ripped through the Stars’ top order, taking five wickets to set up the 56-run win.
Despite the comprehensive victory, Brisbane’s campaign is over – an even bigger winning margin having been required to keep their faint semi-final hopes alive.
Lynn has bowed out of BBL05 but he has surely blasted his way into the Australian Twenty20 World Cup squad.
He finished his eight-game campaign with a century and three fifties and leads the competition with 27 sixes.
— Luke_A_Milligean (@1Reign_Supreme_) January 14, 2016
His 79-run partnership with Lendl Simmons (44 from 35 balls) was the cornerstone of the Heat’s innings in their first visit to the ‘G since the formation of the BBL.
After going for 30 runs in his first over, a shell-shocked Hilfenhaus recovered to take 2-42 from three overs, with Adam Zampa the best of the Stars’ bowlers taking 2-31 from four overs.
The Stars have batted second in each of their seven BBL05 games but this run chase was doomed from the outset.
Badree (5-22) opened the bowling and dismissed in-form Englishman Luke Wright for a duck in his first over.
Kevin Pietersen looked in decent touch when his powerfully struck sweep whizzed past a security guard who had run onto the ground to retrieve a beach ball in the third over but Badree dismissed him lbw for seven soon after.
Marcus Stoinis (8) followed and the Stars were in deep trouble at 5-23 when Badree sent Peter Handscomb (2) and Rob Quiney (0) on their way.
Evan Gulbis provided a rare highlight for the 30,639-strong crowd with an unbeaten 61 from 52 balls, as the green team struggled to 9-132 from their 20 overs.
The Stars were gunning for their fifth win in a row, which would have secured their fifth BBL semi-final appearance, but they must attempt to complete that task when they travel to Perth to take on Scorchers in their last pool match.