Just 161 runs total were scored at Etihad Stadium on Monday night, where the bowlers dominated and only three sixes were hit across both innings.
The Melbourne Renegades started in the best way possible; two wickets off the first two balls to have James Peirson and Joe Burns walking back to the bench for first ball ducks, thanks to James Pattinson.Burns was bowled by an unplayable delivery that tilted his off stump back.
From there, it was game on for the Renegades. The scoreline of 2/0 continued to look more like bowling figures than it did a batting card; it was soon 4/32, then 7/39, before James Hopes and Ben Cutting helped steady the ship somewhat, guiding the Heat to 8/74.
Shakib Al-Hasan was brilliant with the ball, snaring four wickets for just 13 runs. Miscommunication in the middle had Andrew Flintoff run out and looking frustrated for a mere score of three. Pattinson conceded 22 in his second over, but came in with such a flurry the Heat batsmen had no idea what to do, other than fend away the good balls.
The 35 run partnership between Hopes and Cutting was the only highlight to come from a disappointing effort.
Renegades fans looked pretty happy, and there was plenty of talk the runs would be knocked off in 10 overs. That is, before Hopes had Matthew Wade slashing to Flintoff in the slip cordon, the Englishman grabbing some air time for the camera. Stokes was caught and bowled soon after by Dan Christian, and Doolan was left stranded for just 10 after cracking a glorious cover drive. At 3/19, Etihad Stadium went a little quiet.
Callum Ferguson‘s stumps were disturbed by Steve Parry, and Shakib Al-Hasan was dismissed for just 2; the scoreline read 5/39. Enter “The Postman” and acting captain Ben Rohrer, and young Tom Beaton. An unbeaten 42 run partnership sealed the deal after 14 overs.
Brisbane looked to be right in it after the dismissal of Ferguson, but such is the experience of Rohrer, he slowly helped drag the Renegades out of the “danger zone”. He was fortunate to be put down at third man, a chance gone begging that may have proved beneficial for the Heat.
Hopes and Christian were the pick of the bowlers for the Heat, with figures of 1/8 and 2/13 respectively.
The game dynamic fell into the Renegades hands from the first over, and despite the wobble in the middle, they made it home. Never did they want to come out and slam sixes left, right and centre; it was all about working the ball around to build up a score.
Beaton’s 31 followed up his 34 off 29 balls against the Melbourne Stars last Saturday, and continued to impress with his shot selection – including two towering sixes towards the leg-side boundary.
Fawad Ahmed (1/7 from four overs) gave the Heat batsmen nothing to play with, which was key to giving the Renegades the upper hand. However, the damage had been done with the ball right at the start that the Heat could never recover.
It has been a disappointing season for Brisbane; Forrest, Peirson, Lynn and the rest of the order, on their day, are capable of scoring 200 or more. They’ve been beaten on every occasion with scores of 150+, except the game against the Stars.
Having now played one game more than half the competition, the Renegades have to win their final home game against the Adelaide Strikers on Monday, and hope other results fall their way beforehand to ensure they scrape into the finals.
Final score: Brisbane 80 all out lost to the Melbourne Renegades 5/81 by 5 wickets