A magnificent century from Jake Weatherald has helped the Adelaide Strikers claim their maiden Big Bash title beating the Hobart Hurricanes by 25 runs.
After Travis Head won the toss and elected to bat, it was no surprise to many as the Strikers have elected to bat on their home deck every match this summer, winning every time with an average score of 165.
With Alex Carey and Weatherald building a formidable partnership all summer, the Strikers’ opening partnership began the innings just as they have all season. Racing out of the blocks, they reached an impressive 41, before Carey fell to Joffa Archer for 18. After the breakthrough for Archer, Weatherald made sure the Strikers weren’t hampered by the loss of Carey, posting 1-53 after the batting power play.
The 23-year-old, who has come of age in the last four games of the tournament posting three half centuries in his past four innings, continued this vein of form by targeting the square boundaries as he powered his way to a century.
Without being too adventurous with his shots, Weatherald still managed to play an aggressive innings nevertheless that saw him smash four sixes and a four in the space of two overs.
After posting the first ever century in a Big Bash final in the 16th over, Weatherald’s spectacular innings came to an end on 115 off 70 balls, in a innings that featured nine fours and eight sixes in total.
With Travis Head playing an unfamiliar role from the semi final win a couple of nights ago, where he starred with the bat, Head played supporting role for Weatherald, posting an unbeaten 44 off 29 balls.
After being put down by D’arcy Short early in his innings, Head played a vital role in ticking the scoreboard over and getting the in-form Weatherald on strike as often as possible.
With a small cameo from Colin Ingram (14 from six balls) at the end of the innings, the Strikers set the Hurricanes 203 for victory.
If the total was tough enough for the Hurricanes, the experienced and ever reliable Peter Siddle ensured that the total wasn’t going to be easy one to achieve.
Sending in Tim Paine instead of Mathew Wade to partner Short to open the innings was a surprise to many, the Hurricanes hoped that Paine could play a similar role to what Head played in the previous innings, by partnering the in-form Short.
With this decision backfiring, as Paine was dismissed in the first over, former Australian T20 captain George Bailey ensured that they were keeping up with the required run rate, coming in at first drop by posting an impressive 31 off 18.
After an unusual quiet start for Short, who before the game was named BBL07’s player of the tournament, he resumed to his usual festivities as he posted his fourth half century of the tournament smashing four sixes and six fours on his way to 68 from 44 deliveries.
After Bailey and Short departed, Mathew Wade eventually slipped down to no.6, only to be run out for a rare diamond duck. The Hurricanes eventually fell short of the 203 required, posting 5-177 in the 20 overs with Peter Siddle recording figures of 3-17.