De Villiers Dazzles as Heat Hand Stars a Hiding | Brisbane Heat - BBL
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De Villiers Dazzles as Heat Hand Stars a Hiding

25 January 2020

An AB de Villiers masterclass helps the Heat keep their season alive after another lacklustre effort from the Melbourne Stars in their third straight loss

WATCH: Melbourne Stars vs Brisbane Heat Match Highlights


The match in a tweet: AB de Villiers delivers BBL masterclass when Heat need it most as Brisbane hand ladder-leading Stars a third straight defeat to keep their season alive

The score: Brisbane Heat 5-186 (De Villiers 71, Lynn 34; Zampa 3-27) defeated the Melbourne Stars (Handscomb 27; Swepson 3-31) by 71 runs at the MCG with 14 balls to spare

 

The hero: This was exactly the type of innings the Brisbane Heat envisaged when they signed AB de Villiers.

Arguably the greatest 'finisher' the shortest format has seen, de Villiers blasted 71 off just 37 balls as he unleashed a series of jaw-dropping sixes in his first BBL half-century on his fifth attempt.

The South African had been hamstrung in previous innings by wickets falling around and again he had to bide his time as the Heat lost their fourth wicket on only 116 with fewer than five overs to go.

Yet after being 13 off 16 balls, de Villiers belted his next 21 deliveries for 58.

WATCH: AB de Villiers with 71 off 37


The enthusiastic Marnus Labuschagne proved the ideal foil as the dynamic right-hander finally had a real license to launch an extended onslaught. He was murderous on anything short even despite the MCG's enormous square boundaries, and left keeper Seb Gotch smiling in awe after clubbing wrist-spinner Clinton Hinchliffe for a back-foot driven six over long off.

The Heat took 70 off the final 29 deliveries of their innings in what amounted to a pointed reminder from Brisbane that, despite their batting difficulties in BBL09, they possess an unstoppable weapon in de Villiers.

The support act: Demoted to No.6 and given just a handful of overs to work his magic, Labuschange reminded everyone that this is his summer which we are all just witnesses to.

In only his ninth career T20 game, Australia's breakout batting talent seemed to unlock de Villiers with his boundless energy and then cleared the rope twice in the Heat's late blitz.

He finished unbeaten on 24 off 13 balls. It's the highest score of his T20 career but few would expect it to remain so for long.

The over: In the space of four balls during the ninth over of their chase, the Melbourne Stars effectively squandered the match.

Peter Handscomb had looked ominous in racing to 27 off 17 balls with a pair of crisp straight sixes but an inexplicable run-out attempting a second brought to the crease Glenn Maxwell, who has masterminded a number of run chases during this campaign.

Yet when he was bowled second ball off one that skidded on from leg-spinner Mitchell Swepson, the Stars were four down needing more than 10 runs per over and their chase was all but over, with the two wickets prompting a collapse of 8-47.

WATCH: Mitchell Swepson Bowls Maxwell


The stat: Marcus Stoinis managed just 17 before holing out to the impressive James Pattinson, but managed to pass 600 runs for the tournament along the way. He becomes just the second batter to achieve the feat after D'Arcy Short scored 637 runs last summer.

With at least two more games to go, Stoinis will pass Short's record for the most runs in a Big Bash campaign if his good form continues.

The next stop: The Heat shot up into fifth position with their big win and will secure a finals berth if they can beat the Renegades at Marvel Stadium on Monday afternoon. A defeat could mean curtains, though they could still qualify for the finals with a loss if other results go their way.

Melbourne Stars XI: Marcus Stoinis, Nic Maddinson, Nick Larkin, Glenn Maxwell (c), Peter Handscomb, Seb Gotch (wk), Nathan Coulter-Nile, Clint Hinchliffe, Adam Zampa, Dilbar Hussain, Sandeep Lamichhane

Brisbane Heat XI: Ben Cutting, Sam Heazlett, Chris Lynn (c), AB de Villiers (wk), Matthew Renshaw, Marnus Labuschagne, Jack Prestwidge, James Pattinson, Mitchell Swepson, Ben Laughlin, Mujeeb Ur Rahman