The score: Hobart Hurricanes 6-159 from 19 overs (Short 67; Mujeeb 2-23, Steketee 2-36) defeated Brisbane Heat 144 from 18.4 overs (Cutting 58; Faulkner 3-25, Archer 2-23) by 15 runs.
The hero: D’Arcy Short started the new KFC BBL season with a bang, hammering an entertaining 67 for Hobart Hurricanes at Metricon Stadium. The powerful left-hander, who was the competition’s leading run-scorer in BBL|07 with 572 runs at 57.20, belted four fours and as many sixes in a 52-ball knock as the Hurricanes posted 6-159. The total proved sufficient as Brisbane Heat fell short and slipped to 0-2.
The supporting cast: Hobart’s bowlers performed admirably against Brisbane’s crack batting line-up to back up the fine work of their batsmen. Jofra Archer bowled with plenty of venom to take 2-23 from four overs, while recruit James Faulkner was a constant threat for his new club after crossing from Melbourne Stars, returning figures of 3-25 from 3.4 overs and taking two wickets in the final over to seal victory. Johan Botha and Riley Meredith also claimed two wickets apiece as their team got off to a winning start.
The consolation act: Ben Cutting delivered a superb performance for the Heat to give the Hurricanes more than a few nerves. The dangerous hitter arrived at the crease with his team wobbling at 4-56 in the eighth over and put on 37 with skipper Chris Lynn before taking on the lead role. Cutting cleared the boundary rope five times in a whirlwind knock of 58 from 31 balls. The Heat still needed 23 to win from 10 balls when he departed and it proved too great a task. Cutting also took two fine catches and finished with 0-27 from his four overs.
The moment: With the Heat requiring 67 runs to win from 35 balls, Lynn picked out Alex Doolan at long on off the bowling of Faulkner. While Cutting threatened to inspire the home side to an unlikely win, Lynn’s departure proved a massive blow as the Hurricanes went on to complete the job. It was a watchful innings from Lynn, who made 29 from 37 balls as he looked to steer the Heat to victory.
The catch: Cutting showed his athletic prowess when he completed a fine catch at deep square leg for the Heat.
The stat: Ben McDermott was run out again tonight courtesy of a superb piece of fielding from Josh Lalor at fine leg. McDermott has now been run out in six of his past 13 innings across all formats. He was caught out of his ground in all three T20I matches against Pakistan in the UAE earlier this year.
The broken bat: Hurricanes recruit Botha had an eventful first hit for his new club, the South African snapping his bat in half at Metricon Stadium during the final over of his team’s innings.
The next stops: The Hurricanes will be looking to go 2-0 when they tackle Melbourne Stars at Blundstone Arena on Christmas Eve, while the Heat will return to the Gold Coast on New Year’s Day to tackle Sydney Sixers.
Brisbane Heat: Brendon McCullum, Max Bryant, Chris Lynn, Joe Burns, Sam Heazlett, James Peirson, Ben Cutting, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Mitch Swepson, Josh Lalor, Mark Steketee. 12th man: Brendan Doggett.
Hobart Hurricanes: Matthew Wade (capt), D'Arcy Short, Alex Doolan, Ben McDermott, George Bailey, Simon Milenko, James Faulkner, Johan Botha, Jofra Archer, Clive Rose, Riley Meredith. 12th man: Jake Doran.