Melbourne Renegades made two astonishing comebacks in the final of Big Bash League 2019 to clinch a 13-run victory over the Melbourne Stars.
It was the maiden BBL final for both the Melbourne franchises, and it was the Renegades who held their nerves to come out on top in the topsy-turvy encounter. They defended a below-par score of 145/5 with gusto, restricting Stars to 132/7 in a dramatic run-chase.
Dan Christian, who scored an unbeaten 38 and returned two wickets with the ball, was adjudged the Player of the Match for his all-round display.
— KFC Big Bash League (@BBL) February 17, 2019
Renegades made two stunning comebacks in the game, one in each innings!
Comeback with the bat
Marcus Harris continued his poor run at the top of the order, falling to Jackson Bird for 12 after Stars won the toss and elected to field. Aaron Finch, the Renegades skipper, was then run-out at the bowler’s end, and his team was reduced to 25-2 within four overs.
Things went from bad to worse for them, as their middle-order fell like a pack of cards. Sam Harper, Cameron White and Mackenzie Harvey were dismissed for 6, 12 and 14, and the Renegades were in a world of trouble at 56-5.
A sublime partnership between Tom Cooper and Dan Christian came to their rescue, as the duo added 80 crucial runs for the sixth wicket. Cooper smashed two fours and as many sixes in his 35-ball 43*, while Christian gave him good company with a 30-ball 38*.
The Renegades smashed 29 runs in last two overs, swinging the momentum in their favour midway through the game.
7 wickets. 19 runs. 30 balls. 1 epic collapse pic.twitter.com/meSzWcL7KC
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) February 17, 2019
Comeback with the ball
While Renegades had managed to get to a fighting total, they needed a couple of quick scalps with the ball to put early pressure on the Stars in the chase. However, openers Ben Dunk and Marcus Stoinis dug in deep, notching a 93-run partnership for the first wicket.
Dunks scored a 45-ball 57 laced with boundaries and Stoinis played a supporting role with a 38-ball 39. The latter was ultimately dismissed by Cameron Boyce in the 13th over, and that was when madness ensued.
Peter Handscomb, Glenn Maxwell, Nic Maddison, Seb Gotch and Dwayne Bravo were dismissed for single-digit scores, as the bowlers made quick inroads to stun the middle-order. Stars collapsed from 93-0 to 112-7, and Renegades completed a stunning turnaround.
Adam Zampa tried his best with 10-ball 17* in the lower order, but it was too little too late for the Stars, as the Renegades sealed a stunning victory to claim their maiden BBL title.