Perth Scorchers v Melbourne Stars, 1st semi-final, Perth January 21, 2012

Mitchell Marsh and Gibbs power Scorchers to final

ESPNcricinfo staff

Perth Scorchers 3 for 174 (Gibbs 71, Mitchell Marsh 41*) beat Melbourne Stars 8 for 163 (Faulkner 38) by 11 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Perth Scorchers became the first team to secure a place in the finals of the Big Bash League, and the Champions League T20, after a convincing victory over Shane Warne's Melbourne Stars at a packed WACA ground. Herschelle Gibbs and Mitchell Marsh provided the fireworks at the start and end of the Scorchers' innings, before a double-wicket maiden from Ben Edmondson sucked the momentum out of the Stars' chase. Marsh also chipped in with two wickets and two catches to walk off with the Man-of-the-Match award.

In the first half of the chase, Luke Wright and James Faulkner put the Stars on course to overhaul the target of 175, reaching 88 for 2 after ten overs. Enter Edmondson, to swing the match the Scorchers' way. He had Wright swinging a catch to midwicket before getting the vital wicket of David Hussey for a golden duck courtesy a diving take from wicketkeeper Luke Ronchi. The perfect time for Edmondson to bowl his first maiden of the tournament.

There was still plenty of batting to come for the Stars' but they slipped further off course as Marsh removed Adam Voges and Cameron White in successive overs. Matthew Wade reeled off a few sixes to keep the Stars' fans hoping, but it proved too tall a target.

The Stars' would have been chasing a more modest total if they had been tighter in the field. Both the Scorchers' openers, Gibbs and Marcus North, were reprieved early in their innings, though both were difficult chances. Wade then fumbled a simple stumping that would have sent back Paul Collingwood.

Gibbs was the driving force behind the Scorchers' innings till his dismissal in the 17th over. He gave them a bright start by dispatching the first ball of the match through cover for four, and then smashing the first three deliveries of the second to the cover boundary. His stroke-filled innings ended when he top-edged a catch back to the bowler, but there was hardly any slackening of the pace as Marsh clubbed four sixes in the final three overs.

The Scorchers now await the winners of Sunday's clash between Hobart Hurricanes and Sydney Sixers in the final, at home next Saturday.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Lou on January 22, 2012, 7:59 GMT

    Mitchell Marsh could be anything, but I'd rather that he stayed put with WA for a while. They are turning him into a reasonable slips fielder (he has bucket paws on him like Hayden) and they give him more responsibility that he'll get sitting on the bench for Aus at present. He could end up skippering a bit further along the line so, I'd be more than happy for him to be ignored for national reps for now.

  • Dummy4 on January 22, 2012, 6:25 GMT

    y mitchell marsh is not in the squad??????

  • Dummy4 on January 22, 2012, 4:47 GMT

    How good is Hoggy going. good enough to play 20/20 for australia. my 20/20 aus team would be warner, Birt, watson, hussey, Hussey, Marsh, Wade or ronchi, Faulkner, Hoggy, Starc, McDermott. Maybe S Marsh to open, beer or o'keefe as im dreaming hoggy will play although wish he would. Birt has to play on form, faulkner, starc and mcdermott have probably been the form bowlers with coulter-nile. Warner or D Hussey to captain instead of White. 20/20 has to be based on form and form alone.

  • Dummy4 on January 22, 2012, 3:06 GMT

    and the best thing is marsh is only 20 years old!! what an amazing talent!

  • Andrew on January 22, 2012, 1:47 GMT

    @Shandorinho - mate there's been plenty of regular poms on Oz blogs beating their chest about "bench strength" in England & the lack of talent in Oz. Interestingly since a certain test in the UAE, they have gone silent, so warm applause for sticking your head up from behind the bush!!! @jonesy2 - wouldn't go that far, but I can see him nailing a short form Ozzy cap permanantly VERY soon. I think he is still a WIP with his batting! @AidanFX - I think if he was to regularly be an ODI/IT20 player I think it has to be as an allrounder batting no higher than #7, maybe a direct replacement for Hastings @ around #8 OR as a designated pinch hitter to either come in during the PP, or just before they call a PP???

  • Karl on January 22, 2012, 0:39 GMT

    Australain selectors have picked the wrong Marsh...

  • Girik on January 22, 2012, 0:10 GMT

    Warnie couldn't weave his magic for one last time. You'd expect Hobart to join them based on the round-robin results but you never know. Unlike Perth, the Hurricanes lost a bit of momentum in recent times so the Sixers have a chance.

  • Mick on January 21, 2012, 23:33 GMT

    @jonesy2 - Up until the the finals Mitch Marsh had 3 wickets in 8 games at an average in the high forties. I think your getting a bit excited about the best all rounder in the world tag.

  • Paul on January 21, 2012, 23:20 GMT

    Add in Shaun Marsh, Mike Hussey and Mitchell Johnson and they should have a reasonable team for the Champions League. M Hussey, Gibbs, S Marsh, M Marsh, M North, P Collingwood, Ronchi, Johnson, Coulter Nile Hogg and Rimmington. Couldn't find a place for Katich or Edmondson.

  • Terry on January 21, 2012, 21:46 GMT

    Was in Perth over Christmas and am sure i read that the Scorchers were favourites for the wooden spoon. Mitchell Marsh is making big strides forward and could be anything.

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