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Alyssa Healys spectacular knock of 57 runs came off just 27 balls
Rain played spoilsport in the opening match of the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL) as only 11 overs were possible. That was still sufficient for mercurial wicketkeeper batter Alyssa Healy, who was at her absolute ruthless best to take the Sydney Sixers home by six wickets at Bellerive Oval in Hobart, on Thursday (October 14). Healy’s bludgeoning knock of 57 overshadowed Stars opener Elyse Villani’s innings of unbeaten 54 off just 31 balls.
There was a bit of collapse as the Stars picked three wickets, to cause a bit of worry in the Sixers camp but Nicole Bolton remained calm, and her invaluable unbeaten seven runs off four balls took the team home.
Chasing 100 runs in 66 balls, the Sixers needed to get off the blokes quickly. Healy did just that and took off from ball one. Such was her ruthless stroke play that Shafali Verma, on her WBBL debut was just a mere spectator. Verma is known to go big from the onset but seeing the wicketkeeper batter go bang she was happy to play the second fiddle. In a 40-run opening wicket stand, Verma’s contribution was just 8 runs. Her dismissal also could not stop Healy from finding the gaps as she brought her fifty in just 24 balls.
The hard-hitting batter was particularly harsh on youngster Annabel Sutherland who she took on for 16 runs in the sixth over. Healy’s outstanding efforts gave Sixers a rousing start in the WBBL seven. Here is how Twitter reacted to the game.
Elyse Villani’s sensational unbeaten 54 give Stars a fighting total
Before Healy walked away with the bragging rights, Villani demonstrated her hitting prowess by carrying the Stars innings ably on her shoulders. The seasoned campaigner mixed caution with aggression and allowed Sutherland to be comfortable at the other end. Usually, skipper Meg Lanning opens the innings with Villani but this year the Stars wanted to try the all-rounder in the opening position.
Although Sutherland scored only 14 runs, she still helped her team get off to a good start in the power play. Coming in at three, Lanning didn’t display any rustiness whatsoever and quickly put the pressure back on the opposition as she scored an unbeaten 23 runs and took the team to a modest total of 99 runs. In the end, that was not enough as the Sixers won the match with four balls to spare and six wickets in hand.