For the second day in a row the Hobart Hurricanes have lost late in the final over and will leave Brisbane with nothing to show for two games of entertaining, high quality cricket.
Defending a score of 123 against the Brisbane Heat the Hurricanes were the better placed of the two teams at the start of the 18th over. Heat were 5 wickets down with the run rate required to win in excess of 9 per over. But in a sequence of six balls the balance of the game swung decisively the way of the home team as teenager Amelia Kerr peeled 18 runs of Belinda Vakawera’s third over.
Hurricane Hearts sank as the Kiwi prodigy found gaps where her top order colleagues previously hadn’t, in her favour was the fact that the greatly experienced Beth Moody was at the non-strikers end to oversee the onslaught.
Hurricanes skipper Corinne Hall did everything she could to keep her team in the game but the damage had been done. Moody and Kerr paced the last two overs perfectly winning the game with one ball to spare.
Earlier the Heat skipper Kirby Short won the toss and asked the Hurricanes to bat. The Hobart total of 123 was underpinned by an excellent 61 not out off 49 balls by Heather Knight. The next highest score was 20 by the ever reliable Nicola Carey. The chances of a large total looked unlikely when Jess Jonassen took three wickets in the fifteenth over but the Hurricanes innings received late impetus from a thirty one run partnership for the 8th wicket between Knight and on the occasion of her 21st birthday Tayla Vlaeminck. The team went to the innings break in the knowledge it had a defendable total on the board.
In the field and with the ball the Hurricanes applied consistent pressure. The slower paced members of the attack, Gibson, Carey and Knight were particularly effective and with the new ball the birthday girl Tayla Vlaeminck proved a handful as always. In her first over she struck Beth Mooney on the left forearm, a blow that impeded the class left hander for the rest of the innings. But for her misfortune in the 18th over Belinda Vakawera looked threatening as well. It’s an inevitable in T20 cricket that a game can swing in the space of one over and that happened to be the tall opening bowlers third of the day. The Hurricanes maintained high fielding standards throughout the close and very tense run chase.
The Hurricanes know but for a couple of key moments at the Alan Border field they could have been front runners of the competition at the close of this busy weekend. As it is the team will have to regroup this week with its 2/2 record before another double header next weekend at West Park in Burnie against Sydney Thunder.