Corinne Hall has sunk the Melbourne Stars’ finals aspirations for the second time in as many years after smashing a boundary in the final over off Gemma Triscari to secure the Hurricanes place in the WBBL|02 semi-finals.
A sparkling 81 from Australian captain Meg Lanning lifted the Stars to 8/135 but it wasn't enough as Hall and Emma Thompson chased down their total with a ball to spare.
The powerhouse number six was instrumental in the ‘Canes thrilling win on Saturday afternoon, lending a spectacular run-out to her watch-winning knock of 8 off 5 deliveries and saving multiple runs in cover region with her energy and athleticism in the field.
Hall derailed the Stars’ finals campaign in WBBL|01 in a similar fashion, hitting the winning runs off the final ball in a 27-run blitz, but was simply thrilled with today’s result.
“I actually forgot about that win last year, but yeah today was definitely thrilling.
“I was really lucky in that last over – Emma Thompson came out and whacked a boundary over cover when we really needed it, so that made things easier at the end.
“We needed twelve off that last over and you don’t want to leave that until the last minute, so we were looking to find a boundary of those first couple of balls.
"We got two, I sort of missed one down leg and put the pressure back on but then Thommo hit that four and it really took the pressure off.
“It’s a great feeling - every victory is a sweet victory at this stage of the tournament.”
No stranger to the cricketing limelight, Hall made headlines in 2015 after bagging two catches and two run-outs against the Renegades in WBBL|01 – including a spectacular diving effort at backward point –and sympathised with the Stars, who fell agonisingly short of their first finals series after being unable to back-up their last-gasp victory on Friday night.
“That’s the beauty and pain of T20 cricket.
You often find yourself on both ends of the scale throughout the tournament, but I’m really proud of the girls and the way they turned things around from the other night.
Yesterday was a tough, tough loss and there was a lot of pressure on us today to get into the semi-finals, so I’m really happy with the attitude the girls had and everyone contributed again today.”
Despite the nail-biting finish, WBBL skipper Heather Knight was all smiles after win and admitted she was just chuffed for her side to play their second finals series
“I’m usually a dreadful watcher and much prefer being out there but yeah, really thrilled to get over the line today.
“After yesterday where we didn’t quite get over the line, it was really pleasing to do it today – we did it the hard way, but we’re in the semi-finals now and that’s all you can ask for.
“I think Emma and Crinny did a brilliant job today to finish it off with Satters and there was a lot of belief in the dugout that we could do it.
“Obviously we would have loved some of the batters to bat through the innings - there were plenty of starts there but no one batted through to the end.
“Luckily we’ve got a great tail and we bat really deep so it was great to finish it off in the end.”
Though the semi-final schedule will be decided later tonight, Knight said the girls would enjoy their victory and use their previous finals experience to prepare for any eventuality.
“We’re just happy to be here and no-matter who we play, we’ll still have to get through them to the final.
“I think our experience in last years semi-final will stand us in good stead as will those pressure games we’ve played in like today and throughout the tournament.
“We’ll find out tonight who we play and we’ll plan accordingly but I’m just really chuffed for the girls right now.”