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Strikers stunned by Sixers at home

06 January 2019

A second consecutive half-century to Jake Weatherald wasn’t enough for the Adelaide Strikers to hold off a fast-finishing Sydney Sixers outfit at Adelaide Oval.

Weatherald backed up an impressive 71 last round against the Renegades with another 50 from 38 deliveries, however it couldn’t save the Strikers from a six-wicket defeat by the Joe Denly-inspired Sixers.

Denly made an emphatic return to form with an unbeaten 76 to lead his side to victory with 10 balls to spare and lift the Sixers into second position on the BBL ladder.

The result was the Sixers’ first victory over the Strikers in four seasons.

BBL Highlights: Strikers v Sixers

The asking rate always appeared within reach while Denly was in the middle before effervescent wicketkeeper Josh Philippe (30 not out) turned the chase into a cakewalk in front of 31,810 fans at Adelaide Oval.

Denly absorbed the early departure of fellow opener Justin Avendano, who fell for a duck, and along with Daniel Hughes (24) put the Strikers to the sword.

Leg-spinner Liam O'Connor ended the threatening partnership with a wrong 'un that disturbed the timber of Hughes before fellow spinner Rashid Khan struck twice in one over.

The Afghan bowler snared Sixers captain Moises Henriques (16) thanks to a wonderful leg-side stumping from Alex Carey and then Jordan Silk (one) who was caught at slip by Matt Short.

Denly, who came into the match with just 61 BBL runs at 10.16 to his name this summer, had a life on 33 when Cam Valente dropped a high, running return chance.

He made the most of his good fortune in his match-winning 60-ball knock before Philippe broke the back of the Strikers whose 5-150 always looked under-par.

Back-to-back half-centuries for Weatherald

Weatherald (50) and Jon Wells (42*) looked good but the home side needed more contributors throughout the order.

Carey was run out in the opening over - for the third time in his last four knocks - and skipper Colin Ingram (15) and Short (16) failed to capitalise on promising starts.

Weatherald held the key for the home side with the in-form opener crunching Steve O'Keefe (2/31), this season's leading BBL wicket-taker, for 16 off his first over.

But the left-arm former Test spinner had the last laugh, having Weatherald caught at cover point after switching to the River End.

Wells and Valente (17*) lifted the Strikers' scoring rate late but the Sixers' bowlers, led by O'Keefe, had done enough.