1: Strikers opener Jono Dean made his intentions clear early in his cavalier innings. He took 13 from the opening over bowled by Tom Cooper and then smashed Chris Tremain over the fence on the first ball of the next over to move to 19 from seven balls. Then he was gone, caught trying to repeat the shot. At the other end, Jake Weatherald was still to face a delivery.
2: The Strikers set up their big total with some big overs through the middle section of their innings. Sitting on 1/68 after nine overs, Weatherald made his move taking 23 off his next eight balls and Travis Head recovered from a missed run-out chance as they added 47 in four overs. Head’s unbeaten 85 from 57 balls was his third consecutive fifty of the Strikers, following scores of 53 and 58, and lifted his season total to 330 from eight hits.
3: The decision to play Head but to leave out a bowler meant that the captain had to get through some extra overs. After having ten runs taken from the first over of the innings, Head only conceded six, six and five from his next three and also took the key wicket of Renegades opener Marcus Harris, who had sprinted to 45 from 29 balls.
4: Rashid Khan farewelled the Strikers fans with another long autograph/selfie session last night at Adelaide Oval after another important bowling effort in the semi-final. Rashid, who will fly to Dubai to represent Afghanistan in a one-day international on Monday, had 12 runs scored from his first over but then conceded just four runs from his next over, the eighth overall, after the Renegades had raced from 1/23 to 1/76 in the previous four overs. With the first ball of his next over he removed the dangerous Tim Ludeman for 28. Rashid’s last over was saved for late in the innings and after some interesting byplay with Renegades batter Kieron Pollard, who lifted a ball over the rope, he finished with two dot balls and match figures of 1/28. His first BBL campaign finished with Rashid at the top of the wicket-taking list, with 18, for 249 runs from 44 overs, with a competition best economy rate of 5.66. It’s the most wickets taken by any Strikers bowler in a BBL series.
5: Ben Laughlin’s 50th wicket for the Strikers was a significant moment in the game. He had Dwayne Bravo caught by a diving Jono Dean at backward point for 26 in the 16th over, when he allowed only five runs, to lift his season total to 16. He also embraced the responsibility of bowling the last over of the night and most importantly, was able to get a little inswinger past Pollard’s big bat with the final delivery when the Renegades needed three to win. Laughlin is only the fourth bowler to take 50 or more wickets for a BBL team, joining Sean Abbott, Andrew Tye and Jon Hastings.
6: Harry Nielsen will not forget his first BBL game, despite not being needed with the bat or not having a catch come his way. The 22-year-old wicketkeeper – called into the side to replace Alex Carey - had the ball safely in his gloves after Laughlin’s final delivery and immediately started celebrating the thrilling win. Before the game he was presented with his cap by proud dad, former South Australian wicketkeeper and current SACA high performance general manager Tim Nielsen.