An utterly comprehensive triumph by the Sixers, who made mincemeat of a competitive Scorchers total to advance to another home Big Bash final. One that will be played at the Sydney Cricket Ground, not Manuka Oval.
James Vince was quite simply devastating, marshalling the run-chase from start to finish with clean hitting and pinpoint precision to register not only his highest BBL score, but the highest by any Sydney Sixers player. The only disappointment on a night of highs for the Sixers was the fact a wide awarded them victory, leaving Vince stranded at the striker’s end on 98.
It was an innings that deserved to reach triple figures, struck off just 53 deliveries and featuring 14 fours and a six. Vince and Josh Philippe approached the chase with gusto, scoring freely from the outset, and even when Philippe departed for 45 in the ninth over the Sixers looked destined for victory.
Earlier, Josh Inglis (69 off 41 balls) was the standout performer as the Scorchers posted 167-8, a score that at the time looked closed to par but would soon be exposed as woefully insufficient. The Scorchers will get their second chance on Thursday but will need to regroup quickly. They can point to a curious decision to bat first and even Mitchell Marsh’s unfair dismissal as contributing factors in their downfall, but the reality is they were a clear second best. The Sixers, however, are into their fifth Big Bash final and in prime position to make it successive titles.
Sydney Sixers win by nine wickets!
Half-century! Vince 51 off 26 balls
WICKET! Philippe c Fawad b Livingstone 45 (Sixers 92-1)
Perth Scorchers 167-6
WICKET! Richardson c Christian b Dwarshuis 0 (Scorchers 145-6)
WICKET! Turner c Silk b Dwarshuis 33 (Scorchers 144-5)
Half-century! Inglis 50 off 34 balls
WICKET! Marsh c Philippe b O’Keefe 2 (Scorchers 85-4)
WICKET! Munro c Silk b Bird 30 (Scorchers 81-3)
WICKET! Livingstone c Henriques b Brathwaite 15 (Scorchers 39-2)
WICKET! Roy c & b Abbott 3 (Scorchers 5-1)
Scorchers have won the bat flip and will bat first
Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the BBL qualifier between Sydney Sixers and Perth Scorchers. The cream has risen to the top this year and the golden ticket through to the final, with hosting rights thrown in for good measure, will be fought over by the two best teams in the tournament.
Honours are shared in two meetings between the teams this season. The Sixers will be happy to return to Manuka Oval, where they exacted revenge on the Scorchers following a heavy loss to the WA outfit in Perth. The stage is set for a torrid battle in the third chapter of a story that might yet extend beyond tonight.
Both teams possess the enviable ability to score heavily and to do it quickly. Josh Philippe was imperious when the Sixers chased down the Scorchers at Manuka, slaying 84 runs off 52 balls and sharing in a whirlwind partnership of 106 with James Vince. Only Alex Hales has scored more runs than Philippe in this year’s BBL, but the scoring threat exists up and down the order with the Sixers batting as deep as anyone. For the Scorchers, the likes of Jason Roy, Liam Livingstone and Colin Munro can do untold damage at the top of the order. The two attacks are also outstanding. There isn’t likely a better new-ball pair than the Scorchers’ Jhye Richardson and Jason Behrendorff, the former leading the tournament with 27 scalps, while the Sixers have great variety with the ball and can dismantle an opposition innings in several different ways.
Really looking forward to this match. If you’d like to have a say, and I encourage you to do so, drop me an email or tweet @scott_heinrich