The Sydney Sixers beat the Perth Scorchers by six wickets in Sydney during the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL), thanks to a masterclass century from captain and Player of the Match Ellyse Perry.
After winning the toss and electing to bat first, the Scorchers got off to a flying start with captain Elyse Villani (32 off 25 balls, 6×4) and wicketkeeper-batter Amy Jones posting a quickfire 77-run opening partnership. After Villani’s dismissal in the eighth over, Nicole Bolton joined Jones at the crease and continued where Villani left off.
Jones played beautifully for her half-century as she reached 57 off 29 balls – including eight fours and two sensational sixes – before getting her stumps knocked over by South Africa’s Dane van Niekerk.
Bolton’s fourth-wicket partnership with Kate Cross (20 off 10 balls, two fours, one six) had the Scorchers set up for a big finish as they had 144-4 on the board when Cross fell to Van Niekerk in the 16th over.
Proceedings didn’t go according to plan though as Bolton held up one end while she watched her teammates collapse on the other side. She was eventually dismissed in the penultimate over for 40 off 33 balls (3×4).
Van Niekerk carried over her recent good form with the ball from the Women’s World T20 and was the pick of the eight bowlers used in the Sixers attack, finishing with figures of 3-32 from her allotted four overs.
The Scorchers could only manage 167-9 in their 20 overs after initially threatening to post a much higher target, and the Sixers had a slow start to their innings, with the dismissal of World T20 hero Alyssa Healy in the second over of the powerplay.
It was captain and opener Ellyse Perry’s sensational 102 not out off 59 balls – including 14 fours and two sixes – that took the home team over the line with eight balls remaining.
Ashleigh Gardner (26 off 22 balls, 5×4) and Dane van Niekerk (32 not out off 22 balls, 5×4) contributed to the home team’s winning cause as they partnered Perry during her fantastic Player of the Match performance.
The Scorchers let themselves down on the field with some inexcusable errors in the outfield, gifting the Sixers plenty of runs along the way to their six-wicket victory in the 19th over.
The WBBL weekend continues tomorrow when all the teams will be in action, highlighted by the Sydney derby between the Sixers and the Thunder live on SuperSport 2 (Channel 202) at 10am SAST (8am GMT).
Photo: Mark Kolbe/Getty Images