The Brisbane Heat held on to record a 10-run win over the Adelaide Strikers in game two of the Big Bash at Adelaide Oval last night.
Over 38,000 fans watched as the Heat put on a brilliant 5-206, after being sent into bat by the Strikers.
Jimmy Peirson (46 off 29) and Brendon McCullum (42 from 21), who was named man of the match, started the onslaught for the Heat, with a 90 run opening stand off just eight overs.
Alex Ross then continued the damage, blasting a superb 64 from just 36 balls, before he was bowled by Chris Jordan.
However, it could have been a very different story for the Heat, with Ross dropped twice by former Strikers teammate Travis Head, first on naught and then again on five.
Ross started slowly, working his way into the match with 10 runs from his opening 16 deliveries, before smashing 44 runs from the next 16 balls to bring up his half-century.
Chris Lynn also looked in great touch, scoring a quick fire 29 from 20 balls, before he was dismissed via an outstanding one-handed catch on the boundary from Kieron Pollard, which looked certain to be heading over the rope for six.
In reply, Jake Weatherald and Ben Dunk gave Adelaide a superb start, sharing in the biggest opening partnership (133) in Big Bash history at Adelaide Oval.
Weatherald scored 52 from 30 deliveries, while Dunk scored what at the time looked to be a match winning innings, blasting an incredible 85 from just 43 balls. His innings included eight fours and five sixes.
After being 0-133 after the opening 12 overs, the Strikers looked to be in the box seat to chase down the mammoth total, before some tight bowling got the Heat back into the match.
Adelaide needed 30 off the final three overs and 24 off the last two overs, but great bowling from Mitch Swepson, Samuel Badree and Ben Cutting in the final few overs saw the Heat get their campaign off to a winning start.
Zero Wicket’s votes
3. Ben Dunk (Strikers)
While Dunk’s innings (85 from 43) was not enough to get his side over the line, his knock was simply sublime, hitting the blowers to all parts with a strike rate of nearly 200 showing why he won the 2013-14 BBL player of the tournament.
2. Brendon McCullum (Heat)
Retired Kiwi international and Heat skipper, Brendon McCullum, led from the front, getting his team off the perfect start at the top of the order. His captaincy throughout a difficult period when his team look in trouble in the field was also outstanding.
- Samuel Badree (Heat)