The final-over drama: Experienced Hobart quick Scott Boland takes the ball for the last over, tasked with defending seven. Heat second-gamer James Bazley has 47 from 29 and Mark Steketee is at the other end, performing a quite admirable impression of a batter. Three singles from the first three balls. Four from three. Dot ball. Four from two. Two through midwicket. Two needed off one. Steketee on strike. Steketee squirts one to cover. Colin Ingram fields and throws at the non-striker's end. Steketee dives. The ball hits the stumps. It's tight. Third umpire is called. He makes his call: Steketee's bat is in the air. Has he already made his ground?
The hero: Riley Meredith couldn't have done much more to help his side win the match. The right-armer is seriously quick and at one point topped 150kph, while a couple of wicket-taking deliveries were clocked at 147kph and 149kph – too hot for Sam Heazlett and Tom Cooper to handle. Meredith had 3-10 after three overs and after 3.4 overs that was 3-13 – until Mark Steketee took two crucial fours from the final two balls of the 18th over, and from there, the drama unfolded…
The support acts: In his second innings for the Hurricanes, the world's top-ranked T20I batsman Dawid Malan announced himself to the Big Bash by plundering four fours in five balls of young Heat quick Xavier Bartlett in the third over of the match – three delightful off-side drives and one effortless flick over short fine leg. He went on to make 39 (32), with the suggestion that there is much more to come from the Englishman as this tournament unfolds. And then there was Boland. After three superb overs, he had figures of 2-13. Then came the final over of the match, in which the Victorian was ice cool amid the pressure cooker, earning his side the four points with a clinical display of death bowling.
The consolation efforts: Mujeeb Ur Rahman has bowled impressive spells for the Heat before but nothing quite like this. The Afghan spinner was on from the first delivery he bowled, going straight through Ben McDermott to put the 'Canes on the back foot. After two overs, he had 1-6, and then in his third he knocked over Hobart's top scorer and the world's top-ranked T20I batsman Malan. He returned at the close and proved far too deceptive for the Hurricanes tail, with a first-ever T20 five-fer the reward for a sensational spell of bowling.
With the bat, it was the performance James Bazley that stood out for the Heat, the second-gamer following up a composed 31no on debut four nights ago with a repeat act; this time the imposing right-hander rode his luck somewhat and, with a little help from Mark Steketee, so very nearly took the Heat to victory. Bazley swings hard at virtually everything and when he connects they really go the journey – two maximums in the second tier illustrated the point.
The stat: Mujeeb's 5-15 are the best figures by a Heat bowler in BBL history.
The drops: The Heat let a few chances slip against the Hurricanes last time out and it was the case again tonight. Heazlett dropped a regulation chance at backward point that would've seen Malan depart for 22, while in the 13th over Jack Wildermuth spilled an absolute sitter in the same region to give Colin Ingram a reprieve on eight. Wildermuth dropped another in the 16th over at short fine leg but it was a much more difficult chance, and Ingram was out three balls later.
The next stop: The Heat take on the Sydney Sixers this Saturday night at The Gabba!