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Match Report: Launceston Double Header

26 October 2021

Adelaide Strikers Launceston double-header against Hobart Hurricanes and Brisbane Heat ended in a no-result and a rain-affected loss due to torrential conditions across the weekend.

Players arrived at Invermay Park on Saturday morning to surprisingly fine conditions, with ground staff confident a result could be achieved thanks to passing clouds and an occasionally appearing sun.

Skipper Tahlia McGrath won the flip against her Hobart counterpart, choosing to bowl first after assessing the conditions. Darcie Brown, Amanda-Jade Wellington and Sarah Coyte all enjoyed the contest, reducing the Hurricanes to 5/107 from 16 overs, but then the rain came.

It would not stop for the rest of the day, with all four games scheduled lost to the elements.

The next morning, Strikers and Brisbane Heat players were greeted with a waterlogged field that inspired little confidence in match officials that a game would get underway. A power of work was done by the skilled ground staff, and beneath a sheepish sun, an 11-over a side game was agreed upon.

Making it two from two with the flip, McGrath elected to take the field once more, however the Heat were able to quickly make hay while the sun shone, amassing an impressive 5/104 from their 66 deliveries. The two Georgia’s did the damage for Brisbane, with Redmayne and Voll crunching 28 and 31* respectively, both travelling at a strike-rate approaching 200.

The moment of the innings however belonged to teenage phenomenon Darcie Brown, who claimed the first hat-trick by a Striker in the WBBL, and just the sixth all-time in the competition. Redmayne, Ellie Johnston and Laura Kimmince fell to consecutive deliveries from the exciting quick, with celebrations uncorked as South African international Laura Wolvaardt took a cool catch on the boundary to secure the feat.

Speaking post-game, Brown was clearly delighted with the achievement, but much more concerned with the result of the game.

‘It was pretty cool, I’ve never taken a hat-trick before, but unfortunately we didn’t get the win which would’ve capped it off. I had no idea [I was the first WBBL Striker to take a hat-trick], I don’t really look into the stats too much. It was pretty fun though, and it was nice to get out there after yesterday’s game was cancelled.’

The Strikers were unable to chase down the total, despite a strong opening partnership of 68 between Wolvaardt and fellow international Dané van Niekerk to begin proceedings. Wolvaardt in particular was sublime on her way to a Player of the Match nod with 54 from 30 deliveries including five fours and three sixes.

Eventually, the Strikers would fall just five runs short in an enthralling contest, the side’s first loss of the tournament and final game in Tasmania before heading home to prepare for a trip west to face the Scorchers and Renegades at Lilac Hill.