Melbourne Stars v Sydney Thunder, BBL, Melbourne

Warner ton powers Thunder home

The Report by Daniel Brettig

December 17, 2011

Comments: 36 | Text size: A | A

David Warner reaches his century, Melbourne Stars v Sydney Thunder, Big Bash League, Melbourne, December 17 2011
David Warner was everywhere against the Stars at the MCG Hamish Blair / © Getty Images

Shane Warne dominated the build-up, David Warner dominated the match. Sydney Thunder's captain courageous, Warner, spanked an unbeaten century after sparkling in the field to lead his team to a six-wicket victory over the Melbourne Stars in the Twenty20 Big Bash League encounter at the MCG.

Combative but also imaginative, Warner marshalled his team intelligently to restrict the Stars to 7 for 153 on a pacey surface. He then crashed no fewer than six sixes in an innings of belligerence, peaking at the moment Warne entered the attack in front of a 23,496-strong Melbourne crowd that has adored him for nearly 20 years.

Warner chose that over to launch into the most monstrous six over long-on, and heaved another in Warne's second. He would bowl only two overs for 19 runs, no doubt restricted by the burns a cooking accident had inflicted on his bowling hand.

The Thunder's bowlers had given Warner a decidedly manageable target to aim at with a stolid ensemble, highlighted by the bowling of the unheralded Scott Coyte and Luke Doran. Doug Bollinger grabbed two wickets though he struggled for rhythm and speed.

Chris Gayle accompanied Warner to the middle for the chase, an opening combination of awe-inspiring power. However Gayle's stay was brief and painful - he was struck a blow on the gloves by the sharper-than-you-think James Faulkner, before being yorked by the left-armer's slower ball before the first over was complete.

Warner was thus left a free stage on which to perform, which he did with all the confidence of a man who must surely now be an integral part of the Australian Test team against India. Of the Stars' bowlers only Faulkner escaped punishment, as Warner biffed them in a display that showed how far he had come as a batsman since his international Twenty20 debut against South Africa at the MCG in 2009. The England bowlers Luke Wright and Jade Dernbach went for a combined 71 from their eight overs.

The only other talking point was the sight of wicketkeeper Matthew Wade wringing his hand after a painful blow on the gloves - his is a set of digits the national selectors would prefer not to be harmed while Tim Paine convalesces.

A speedy, skiddy pitch had greeted the Stars batsmen after Warner sent them in upon winning the toss - a task performed by Elizabeth Hurley - and the pace offered value for strokes as well as possibilities for the bowlers. Bollinger struck first, causing Rob Quiney to miscue to mid-on, while Wade managed only 14 before top-edging a Doran delivery slanted across him to short fine leg.

David Hussey and George Bailey added 41 and seemed to be setting the hosts on the path to a substantial tally, but Bollinger found a way past the flailing bat of the Tasmanian captain. Hussey's striking was typically clean and powerful, including one Bollinger delivery swung many rows back into the Great Southern Stand.

Coyte was delivering a fine spell, and his wickets either side of Hussey's run-out kept the Stars in check. Hussey was clearly aggrieved at his own misjudgement, when he chanced a second run on the arm of Warner and lost conclusively.

Wright added some useful late runs with a bevy of skimming blows, but the final total felt middling at best. Thanks to Warner, it was ultimately made to look considerably less than that.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

RSS Feeds: Daniel Brettig

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Meety on (December 19, 2011, 23:39 GMT)

@hyclass - re Hughes v Warner, point taken. On Justin Langer, I think he is the new Teflon Tim. Also - I am genuinely curious about the question I posed about Warner?

Posted by hyclass on (December 19, 2011, 10:52 GMT)

I think if one point should strike all cricket observers,its the extreme reticence over the period reviewed by Argus,to give any credence to the traditional historical marker of performance of the individual over time. Suddenly,a country that shunned the cult of celebrity and hype and demanded results before accolades,has been convinced to abandon the core principles of its intelligence.Under these auspices,Marsh whose history of back injuries had limited him to 4 games a season over the last 3 years,was selected for Tests.He lasted 2.5. Cummins,who at 17 played his 3rd 1st class game in the Shield Final,was out with injury shortly afterwards. He lasted 1 Test before succumbing to injury. Watson,who spent the better part of his Test life struggling with injury due to what for him passes as over bowling,was again being promoted as a longer bowling option. This resulted in all too familiar injury. Ignoring cumulative and long standing evidence is the pastime of fools and a CA signature.

Posted by hyclass on (December 19, 2011, 6:55 GMT)

@Meety...I was answering a specific piece of hype in a particular blog regarding the conversion rate of Warner and his current standing.Hughes was the best possible example because of his youth and the fact that his record after 3 Tests in both Test and 1st class cricket outstripped Warners.Far from trying to promote Hughes,I was seeking to bring balance to what has been,not just with Warner,but with many Australian cricketers,a runaway train of hype.Hughes has fallen far over an extended period.If it was to happen to Warner,Id like to see far more compassion from the cricketing public than has shown to guys like Hughes and Smith.@RandyOz..there are the strongest indications from what took place in SA that little had changed with team at that point.Despite Argus,the old CA administration were still in charge,meaning that in principle,the environment was the same.There has been some talk about Langers involvement as batting coach.Given the results of the entire team,id say hes no better

Posted by Meety on (December 18, 2011, 23:29 GMT)

@hyclass - mate, I know that Warner has to tick a few more boxes to prove he is the real deal, but I don't see why you have to knock him, he has built a strong case for inclusion in the Oz side, & IMO you can only score runs against the bowlers you're up against. He is doing so, this pitc was described as skiddy, so it wasn't a flat track. I was a staunch supporter of Hughes - but the poor guy needs to go back to the beginning. I don't see the need to compare Warner to Hughes, superficially I have always thought Warner looked tighter than Hughes, just didn't have the head space to score frequently in FC cricket or tests, he HAS worked on this & I genuinely believe he COULD/SHOULD evolve into a very very good test batsmen, early days but he should be enjoyable to watch. Just curious, if Warner was to collect a double ton on Boxing Day - would that prove anything positive to you about Warner? For what its worth if I was the selector I'd seriously consider a Warner/Rogers opening combo!

Posted by Randy_Wilson on (December 18, 2011, 19:05 GMT)

where is GAYLE power now, 4 Runs? thats it? this is just the first game. so we will see.

Posted by RandyOZ on (December 18, 2011, 13:05 GMT)

@hyclass, you mean like the flat pitch Hughes scored his hundred on in Sri Lanka, based on which you tried to convince us that Hughes was back and fixed his batting, and that it wasn't a conincidence that Nielsen had gone? Can you never give credit where credit is due? Warner produced a brilliant hundred which no one else got anywhere near (closet 56), he has more than proved that he deserves a spot in the side over Hughes. Hughes, incredibly, got out the exact same way 4 times in a row, caught at second slip. I believe Hughes will be an awesome opener in the future but needs a year in Shield to get his head straight. He is not even close to Warner at the moment. FYI the MCG isn't exactly a 'small ground'!

Posted by Hrit24 on (December 18, 2011, 12:54 GMT)

Just stunned by Warner's ton, reminds me of a certain Adam Gilchrist. He has to open the batting for Aus right away with Watson. Mike Hussey and Ponting has to retire. Dave Hussey is stil good and Clarke is okay as a captain. Khawaja, Marsh. Ferguson, and Travis Birt should be given more chances. Fast bowling department should be manned by Cummins, Pattinson, Siddle and Christian (Hilfenhaus is 5th option). The spinners should include Hauritz, Lyon, O'Keefe. I also think Ben Dunk should be keeper, he is much better than Paine. His limited-overs statistics show for it. Let Haddin keep in Tests.

Posted by hyclass on (December 18, 2011, 11:05 GMT)

@Nathan Lynch...Warners average for NSW is 46. Thats his actual record in the strong Australian competition. He made his last hundred for his state against the ever weak Sth Australian side on a small regional ground and flat pitch. He made another on a similar ground and pitch in Zimbabwe in a game where Finch passed 150.He has a history of making runs against weak attacks on flat pitches.His 100 v NZ while meritorious was laced with luck.When Hughes arrived in England in 09 before the Lions game,he had 9 hundreds and 7 fifties at an average and strike rate in both Test and 1st cricket above 60.His previous 10 games had yielded 8 centuries and 1637 runs at 96.He had shown no problem with the short ball or outside off stump and pounded Steyn,Ntini,Morkel,Kallis and Harris to all parts on their home pitch.Nielsen dismantled his batting before the series began and then dumped him when it failed,as it surely had to.I say this to balance the hype of Warners beginning against known facts.

Posted by Wefinishthis on (December 18, 2011, 8:54 GMT)

johntycodes I think you're talking about Michael Clarke who I don't remember scoring a single hundred without being dropped at least once.

Posted by Wefinishthis on (December 18, 2011, 8:41 GMT)

Dismayed are you referring to T20 or Test or both? (Like everyone else, I don't care about ODI's) I too would love to see Warner, Watson, Wade, Faulkner, O'Keefe, Pattinson, Cummins and Lyon in the Aussie team, but I'd like to see Lynn, Patterson, Nevill (even in the same team as Wade), Copeland, Butterworth, Harris, Cutting and Coulter-Nile in there as well. We have a lot of great bowlers (why is Siddle still there?) yet not many great batsmen coming through other than Warner and Watson. Marsh looks good, but I can see him doing another Marcus North where his career starts well but then he'll just be carried for far too long (I hope I'm wrong about him).

Posted by TeamRocker on (December 18, 2011, 6:04 GMT)

Boy, I watched a bit of the BBL, and i've got to say, i think the level of cricket is far superior to the IPL, even if it isn't as hyped.

Posted by SamRoy on (December 18, 2011, 5:01 GMT)

@Cpt.Meanster You know very little cricket mate. McGill bowled a boundary ball every over. Warne in his prime rarely bowled boundary balls. Test Cricket is all about building pressure and waiting for the batsman to make mistakes. You can't bowl an unplayable ball like Warne bowled to Gatting every over.

Posted by hyclass on (December 18, 2011, 4:11 GMT)

Crowds of 12000 and 23000.That may rival NRL but not ODI or even Test crowds. Sutherland & CA have spent years deliberately undermining everything that constitutes traditional cricket.The coaches,selectors & physios were not performance managed.The curators were publicly undermined.Shield was berated.Tests were said to be dying & cricket socially divided & diluted by cultural issues.Not one shred of truth exists in anyone of these statements.The conclusion to the last India v WI Test and the NZ v Aus Test were as exciting as anyone could hope for.The majority of Test matches end in results.The few that dont are mostly weather affected.Cricket is the number one participator sport in the country.Test & ODI matches are among the most heavily supported per capita in the world.There was nothing wrong with Australian cricket before this last administration.The difference is,they fully intended to undermine the establishment to make their obsession with BBL money seem appealing & vindicated.

Posted by Mitcher on (December 18, 2011, 3:39 GMT)

@Adnan Shoaib: absolute gold! Bravo sir, bravo. On the other hand, @varun: does 4-0 ring a bell to you? Maybe Aussies aren't the only ones who should be going back to school on facing swing.

Posted by RandyOZ on (December 18, 2011, 1:58 GMT)

Warner showing again why he is one of the most promising young batsmen on Earth.

Posted by   on (December 18, 2011, 0:37 GMT)

Warne got spanked by Warner. I wonder how good Warnest will be, we have to wait approx. 20 years to see him.

Posted by hmmmmm... on (December 18, 2011, 0:31 GMT)

@Varun Saboo - full strength Indian bowling attack...? are you sure?

Posted by Dismayed on (December 17, 2011, 21:16 GMT)

I am hopeful for the day when we can see Warner, Faulkner, S.Smith, S'O'keefe and the 2 young quicks Cummins and Pattinson all in the Australian Test team, Something like Warner, Khawaja,Clarke,Watson,Wade,S.Smith, J.Faulkner, S.Okeefe,Pattinson,Cummins,Lyon. I still like the look of many others youngsters like S.Abbott, Starc, G.Bailey. Would still love to see D.Hussey in all forms.

Posted by Wozza-CY on (December 17, 2011, 20:56 GMT)

Whatever you think of t20 cricket, it has been an avenue for younger players to first get noticed & then showcase their skills on a big stage. For oz,Cummins,Lyon & Warner spring to mind. Hopefully the selectors will take note of Faulkner!

Posted by   on (December 17, 2011, 20:44 GMT)

Actually I don't mind this new bbl league. As a sydney boy it gives nsw a chance to give every blue bagger a go. @ quite powerful nsw teams by the way.

If the prices are dropped then maybe the stands might get filled as well.

I think the league should also include 2 teams from new zealand as well. Plus the timing is a bit off with boxing day coming up the series should have started closer to the finish of the test in hobart so that it could be put on a break for the tests in melbourne and sydney or maybe left till feburary.

Posted by Langdon04 on (December 17, 2011, 20:38 GMT)

@ Ben Kingsbury, I think you are forgetting his pair of ducks against South Africa.

Posted by Zat. on (December 17, 2011, 20:31 GMT)

Can we have some objectivity please cricinfo? A "23,496-strong Melbourne crowd"? Weren't the officials budgeting and planning for about 40,000? And many in the press saying it would be more than 50,000? And some - who had swallowed the hype - were saying there could have been 90,000.

23,496 in Melbourne is a very disappointing result.

Posted by   on (December 17, 2011, 19:26 GMT)

Another T20 league crops up.. *yawn fest* .. Isnt David Warner in Australias Test team now ? Arent they having a batting camp where they have to learn how to play the swinging red ball ? Why is Warner smashing innocuous bowlers to all parts of the MCG when he will be up against hopefully a full strength indian bowling attack in 10 days' time ?

Posted by johntycodes on (December 17, 2011, 17:51 GMT)

Warner had about seven lives and you'll find in his test career when he isn't getting his lucky multiple chances he will have a very lean patch.

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (December 17, 2011, 17:46 GMT)

Warne was OVER HYPED. He looked awkward when he bowled. McGill was much more potent. Warne is clearly there for marketing reasons because CA need LOTS of money. Poor crowd turnout is going to destroy this BBL. I asked many Aussie friends and they are clearly in favor of state teams rather than this circus. Who let Liz Hurley in for the toss ? it was strange. We don't need such theatrics. If CA want to use Warne as their poster boy... I feel sorry for them because he ain't gonna get them much in terms of revenue. It was obvious looking at Warne's body language that he enjoyed captaining the Rajasthan Royals a lot more than just playing second fiddle to Cameron White in the BBL. I am sure Warne isn't there for the money... but he sure is there to help his friends in CA to make some.

Posted by Sniper.Doc on (December 17, 2011, 17:07 GMT)

Great for Big Bash and good on Warner. He should have been a test regular at least two years back and without really assessing his role, he was almost discarded as a T20 player by the then intelligent selection panel. To me Warner is for Aus what Viru is for India. Why are Indian players not allowed to play the league? Someone like Yuvi, Raina, Kohli or R. Sharma would have had ample opportunities to acclimatise or put their hands up for Indias no 6 which is not sure yet. BCCI needs to stop acting like they invented T20. If Aussie can play IPL, why cant we reciprocate? Indian players would add more value to teams especially in Melbourne and Sydney.This is ridiculous decision, players should be free agents and allowed to play depending on seasonal needs. Its not like Delhi Daredevil fans know every player in their team. IPL too is about auctions and teams are more or less different every season.As Rahul puts it Cricket and its fan need respect from establishments such as BCCI.

Posted by RNikh on (December 17, 2011, 16:53 GMT)

This little fella is set for great deeds... Top fielder top batsmen. Australia's gain is Sydney thunder's loss! Hope he can do brilliantly on boxing day and the other three tests. Go for it warner!

Posted by prashkannam on (December 17, 2011, 16:34 GMT)

"Huss and I have got to score more consistently: Ponting" ha hahahahah..a!! its funny every week ponting gives an interview trying to justify his place in the team!! LONG LIVE PUNTER AND HUSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!! IS HE AN AUSTRALIAN BLACK MAMBA!!

Posted by   on (December 17, 2011, 15:41 GMT)

The incredible thing is that Warners last 3 T20 innings have all been unbeaten centirues!! Not sure we we will see that happen again!!

Posted by azzaman333 on (December 17, 2011, 15:38 GMT)

Hussey's run out killed the Stars.

Posted by rahulcricket007 on (December 17, 2011, 15:11 GMT)


Posted by   on (December 17, 2011, 14:12 GMT)

Warner clearer the MCG boundary with ease, hoping he can do the same same boxing day! He is a fantastic player, he was all over the match tonight in the field and with the bat. His shots get hit and stay hit in a way few can match.

Posted by Charindra on (December 17, 2011, 13:31 GMT)

So Warne is back.... Didn't he have enough attention in the IPL? Always been more hype and mind games than actual talent with him.

Posted by lebigfella on (December 17, 2011, 13:15 GMT)

Warner... the next massive thing for Australian Cricket... and great to watch in all forms of the game and at all levels... long may it continue

Posted by   on (December 17, 2011, 12:58 GMT)

This guy now averages 61 in first class cricket including 4 centuries and 3 fifties, as a common rule of thumb an average of 50 is 1st class, espeically in a stronger 1st class scene like australia or england, and the fact that he has converted more of his big scores to 100 than 50 is another big pointer, generally statisically if a batsmen scores 2/3rd the centuries he does 50's it is above par, this guy is 133% centuries to fiftes, lets not forget he also averages approx 75 in test cricket, along with vernon philander he is one of the 2 most eciting tlents to enter the international scen in TEST cricket in 2011, it gets me thinking that potentially this whole Twenty/20 comp in aus this time of year is not that bad a plan after all, he has just cemented his test spot and a few young bowlers have stuck their heads up aswell to be noticed, same thing happened out of the indian 20/20 for indian fringe players over the last few years

Posted by jonesy2 on (December 17, 2011, 12:56 GMT)

warner, what a ridiculous ridiculous man, he fielding is almost as amazing to watch as his batting. the english imports have been well out of their depth so far. i hope paul collingwood isnt detrimental to the scorchers

Comments have now been closed for this article

Email Feedback Print
Daniel BrettigClose
Daniel Brettig Assistant editor Daniel Brettig had been a journalist for eight years when he joined ESPNcricinfo, but his fascination with cricket dates back to the early 1990s, when his dad helped him sneak into the family lounge room to watch the end of day-night World Series matches well past bedtime. Unapologetically passionate about indie music and the South Australian Redbacks, Daniel's chief cricketing achievement was to dismiss Wisden Almanack editor Lawrence Booth in the 2010 Ashes press match in Perth - a rare Australian victory that summer.
Tournament Results
Scorchers v Syd Sixers at Perth - Jan 28, 2012
Syd Sixers won by 7 wickets (with 7 balls remaining)
Hurricanes v Syd Sixers at Hobart - Jan 22, 2012
Syd Sixers won by 7 runs
Scorchers v Melb Stars at Perth - Jan 21, 2012
Scorchers won by 11 runs
Melb Stars v Strikers at Melbourne - Jan 19, 2012
Melb Stars won by 6 wickets (with 7 balls remaining)
Syd Sixers v Scorchers at Sydney - Jan 18, 2012
Syd Sixers won by 1 run
Hurricanes v Melb Reneg at Hobart - Jan 18, 2012
Hurricanes won by 7 wickets (with 1 ball remaining)
More results »
News | Features Last 3 days
News | Features Last 3 days