A half-century from West Indian power hitter Andre Russell (57 off 42) and a quickfire innings from Akeal Hosein (30 off 19) help the Melbourne Renegades maintain their unbeaten start to BBL12 with a four-wicket win over the Brisbane Heat in Geelong.
Brisbane Heat star Michael Neser returned to the Big Bash with a sonic boom, routing the Melbourne Renegades’ top order and claiming the ninth hattrick in competition history and four wickets inside eight deliveries.
But Russell launched a stunning rearguard, whacking half a dozen sixes as he top-scored with 57 off 42.
One of his sixes was a 103m monster – the equal-biggest of the season so far – belted straight back over James Bazley’s head. WATCH BELOW
Just admiring this shot 😍 pic.twitter.com/G6ljSi7q2J
— Melbourne Renegades (@RenegadesBBL) December 21, 2022
The spectacular innings helped guide the Renegades to 6-139, squeaking past Brisbane’s modest tally of 8-137 with four balls to spare.
The Renegades managed just 10 wins over three years after claiming the 2018-19 title, but now have a perfect 3-0 start this season.
Brisbane have slumped to 0-2 despite the heroics of Neser, who claimed career-best T20 figures of 4-32 in his first match
Earlier, Brisbane won the toss and batted first but staggered through an innings that lacked the usual T20 fireworks.
Tom Rogers’ career-best figures of 4 for 23 and Hosein’s 3 for 26 ensured that Heat dragged to 137/8 after opting to bat.
Jimmy Peirson, captain and wicketkeeper, top-scored with 45* off 30 but he really lacked support from the other end. Matt Renshaw’s run-a-ball 29 and Sam Billings’ 25 off 19 were the only batters who got starts, with all others limited to single digits.
Brief Scores: Brisbane Heat 137/8 in 20 overs (Peirson 45*; Rogers 4-23) lost to Melbourne Renegades 139/6 in 19.2 overs (Russell 57; Neser 4-32) by 4 wickets