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Strikers continue NYE streak

31 December 2018

The Adelaide Strikers have maintained their perfect record in New Year's Eve matches and kept their BBL championship defence alive after defeating the Sydney Thunder by 20 runs.

After posting 4/175, the Strikers defended grandly, restricting the Thunder to 6/155 and improving their perfect record in end-of-year marquee matches to six-from-six in front of 41,987 fans at Adelaide Oval.

Callum Ferguson (47) kept the Thunder afloat as wickets fell around him and the asking rate escalated, but when he holed out to Jake Weatherald off Peter Siddle (3/20), it was game over.

Siddle's stirring spell on return

Player-of-the-match Siddle also snared dangerous England duo Jos Buttler (23) and Joe Root (18) while Thunder captain Shane Watson also made a promising start before holing out for 28 after some quick-thinking teamwork in the deep.

With smoke filling the arena as the nearby fireworks filled the sky, Weatherald, about to overstep the rope, evoked memories of last summer's stunning catch when he teamed with Ben Laughlin at Docklands by flicking the ball to Jake Lehmann to complete the catch.

Leg-spinner Rashid Khan, bravely taking his place after his father passed away on Sunday night, grabbed 2/34.

Earlier, Strikers skipper Colin Ingram emphatically returned to form with a BBL career-best 75 off 43 balls, putting on 65 for the second-wicket with Alex Carey (59).

Ingram, who had scored just 24 runs at 8.00 leading in, smashed six sixes as a 200-plus total looked on the cards.

Ingram's best BBL innings

But when the skipper slogswept Fawad Ahmed's flighted wrong'un to Daniel Sams, the Strikers' innings lost some momentum but the damage had already been done.

The Strikers next travel to GMHBA Stadium in Geelong to take on the Melbourne Renegades on 3 January.