A dazzling five-wicket haul by Dan Christian and a valuable opening batting partnership have led Hobart Hurricanes to a eight-wicket BBL win over Adelaide Strikers.
At Bellerive Oval on Monday night the hosts were set 144 for victory and chased down the target with 14 balls to spare in a convincing result.
Openers Tim Paine (41) and D’Arcy Short (60) quickly settled into rhythm, with the latter reaching his half-century from just 33 deliveries.
He celebrated with a 101-metre six that not just cleared the boundary but went out of the ground.
Adelaide looked frustrated as they searched for a solution to slow the big-hitting duo.
“It’s a pretty good strip,” Strikers captain Brad Hodge said of the Bellerive pitch via on-field microphone.
Paceman Billy Stanlake (1-17) made the breakthrough, with Short caught behind in the 12th over.
From the sideline Short offered a modest assessment of his contribution.
“I just go out and try to hit the ball the best I can and see how it comes off … it felt pretty good,” he told the Ten network.
International Kumar Sangakkara (22 not out), elevated to No.3 for the Hurricanes on Monday, was the replacement batsman and when Paine was bowled by Travis Head (1-22) it brought George Bailey (six not out) to the middle and the pair completed the challenge.
After winning the toss and telling the visitors to bat first, Hobart skipper Paine named a spin-dominated attack, but it turned out to be pace bowler Christian who did the most damage.
The allrounder finished with 5-14, his best Twenty20 figures and the second best in the history of the BBL.
The visitors’ innings was a struggle and ended with the loss of five wickets for just 13 runs in the final two-and-a-half overs.
Christian took three scalps in the final over, including Hodge who top-scored for the visitors with 55.
“It’s nice to get the figures tonight, the ball has been coming out well lately,” Christian said.
It’s a good result for Hobart’s bowling attack which is minus gun paceman Shaun Tait, who was ruled out of selection with an elbow injury.