Big Bash Final: Renegades Win After Stunning Fightback
An incredible comeback win in the all-Melbourne Big Bash final has seen the Renegades win their first title.
Melbourne Stars skipper Glenn Maxwell won the bat flip and elected to bowl first in Sunday's BBL final against the Renegades at Marvel Stadium.
The red team made it to 5-145 in their 20 overs batting, and the Stars seemed on track for a win after making it to 0-93 off their first 12 overs.
But a stunning batting collapse saw them crash to finish with 7-132 at the end of their innings, coming up short.
One tweet from cricket.com.au summed it up pretty well:
While the Big Bash official account on Twitter asked the question on the lips of many:
After their opening pair of Ben Dunk and Marcus Stoinis got things off to a good start, with solid scores of 57 and 39 respectively, the next five players in for the Stars failed to make it to double figures. With the first wicket falling with the team on 93, the team lost four wickets for just six runs at one stage.
Adam Zampa finished with 17 not out, with Jackson Bird on 4.
It was an epic and unexpected finish to a game that had already thrown up its fair share of highlights.
Bowler Jackson Bird was a late addition to the Stars' squad, and his injection into the lineup paid early dividends as he claimed the scalp of Renegades captain Aaron Finch with an astonishing piece of fielding.
Bird speared a delivery into batsman Cameron White, who punched it back down the pitch with a straight drive. Bird threw out his foot to block the shot from racing away for four, the ball bouncing off his foot and straight into the wicket at the bowler's end -- with non-striker Finch caught helpless out of his crease.
The commentators couldn't believe it, and Finch didn't even wait for the replay to confirm that he had been caught short.
The Renegades were struggling in their innings, making it to 5-65 midway through their 20 overs, after some sharp bowling from the Stars made it hard for the batting side.
Tom Cooper was the top scorer for the Renegades, ending up with 43 not out, after the team's top five batsmen disappointed in their innings.
But Tom Cooper (43 runs from 35 balls) and Dan Christian (38 from 30) steadied the ship with an unbeaten 80-run partnership from 58 balls.
Legspinner Adam Zampa went for 11 runs in his first over, but recovered to post figures of 2-21 from his four overs.
Bird took 2-25 from three overs, plus that runout.
After a tough summer with the bat for Finch, his frustration at the unlucky dismissal boiled over, cameras catching the ODI skipper twice belting a chair as he disappeared down the tunnel.
Both teams were hoping to claim a maiden BBL title, with the Stars playing in the second final of their franchise history while the Renegades made it to the title game for the first time.