The Sydney Thunder were at their destructive best as they beat the Melbourne Stars by 15 runs on the DLS method to take them to the top of the Big Bash League on net run rate.
After being inserted to bat first, the Thunder had a decent start as they posted 46-1 in the powerplay. The wheels looked like they were coming off when the Stars restricted the runs and took regular wickets, with Adam Zampa (2-23) and Sandeep Lamichhane (2-36) causing most damage.
The home team were reduced to 59-3 in 8 overs when Australian teen sensation Jason Sangha walked to the crease. The up-and-coming youngster accelerated the Thunder’s innings with a boundary-littered 63 not out off just 36 balls, including four fours and four fantastic sixes.
Daniel Sams joined the party with a blistering 34 off 21 balls (1×4, 2×6) as the Thunder posted a competitive 181-5 in their allotted overs.
The heavens opened just three balls into the Stars’ chase with the visitors on 4-0. After a lengthy rain delay, the Stars resumed their innings with a new target of 90 runs from 8 overs on the DLS method.
Sams was the pick of the Thunder bowlers as his 3-5 in two overs rocked the Stars’ batting line-up. Following his batting cameo in the first innings, Sams accounted for opener Travis Dean (seven off nine balls) and Stars’ captain Glenn Maxwell for a duck, before bowling Evan Gulbis (10 off five balls, one six) around his legs with a deadly-accurate yorker.
Sams’ heroics earned him the Man of the Match award and gave the Thunder the victory that takes them top of the table on net run rate – joining their female counterparts as the leaders of the Australian domestic T20 competition.
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