Haddin, Lyon lead Hurricanes drubbing
Sydney Sixers 7 for 186 (Haddin 72, Silk 41, Boyce 2-25) beat Hobart Hurricanes 91 (Bailey 62*, Lyon 5-23) by 95 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
Nathan Lyon obliterated the Hobart Hurricanes at the SCG, as part of the Sydney Sixers' fierce response to suffering a first loss to the Sydney Thunder in five years of the Big Bash League.
Two wickets for Lyon in as many balls in the first over of the Hurricanes' chase was followed up by three more when he returned for a second spell, making an overwhelming case for his consideration as part of Australia's World Twenty20 squad to India next year. Kumar Sangakkara's BBL debut was marked by a golden duck at Lyon's hands, much as the spinner had claimed his wicket with his very first ball in Test cricket, in Galle four years ago.
Shaun Tait's first-over dismissal of Michael Lumb was just about the only moment of ascendancy the Hurricanes enjoyed all afternoon. Brad Haddin flayed a carefree 72 and was helped by contributions from Nic Maddinson and Jordan Silk, before the Hurricanes' reply disintegrated in the face of neat and tidy bowling by Lyon, Doug Bollinger, Steve O'Keefe and Sean Abbott.
The Sixers' largely homegrown combination contrasts with Hurricanes' collection of players hailing from across Australia and the world. It is possible they will settle with the benefit of time, but it is certain that Darren Sammy (0 for 32 in two overs, 2 runs) and Sangakkara in particular will expect better of themselves in future.
Sangakkara's unceremonious exit on BBL debut arrived courtesy of a presumptuous attempt to loft Lyon down the ground, the ball after Tim Paine had flicked the same bowler to midwicket. Lyon had also deceived and dismissed Sangakkara with his first delivery in Test matches - the Sri Lankan champion would not be alone in wondering why Lyon is still considered a Test match only proposition by Australia's selectors.
"He was outstanding, no secret I think he's the premier spinner in Australia no matter what ball he's got in his hand and over the last 48 months he's just getting better and better every time he bowls," Haddin said of Lyon. "That wicket was perfect for him tonight, it had a bit of bounce and turn, so it was good to watch.
"He's a clever bowler now, you only have to look at the results he's produced in Test cricket. I think he's got to just keep improving like he is. Selections are the easy part, they'll take care of themselves, he's just got to keep performing every time he gets the opportunity, and with Test cricket you don't often get the opportunity to play white-ball cricket, but every time he has he's done really well.
"I think you just pick your best bowlers. He can't do anything more Nathan at the moment, he's doing all the right things when he gets the opportunity to play white ball cricket, so it's up to them [the selectors]."
Lyon's web grew more enveloping when he resumed later in the innings, the Hurricanes having been curtailed from building any sort of momentum by regular wickets. These included Doug Bollinger summoning a screeching yorker to splay the stumps of Ben Dunk, and Sammy failing to ride the bounce on a dry surface that nevertheless offered something for the pacemen.
Lyon's loop was to account for Joe Mennie, Sam Rainbird and Tait, leaving him with the handsome figures of 5 for 23. Only the Hurricanes' senior batsman George Bailey was able to put an innings together, his 62 serving mainly to ensure his side avoided the ignominy of posting the most meagre tally in all BBL matches - a record still held by the Melbourne Renegades' 57 all out last season.
Haddin's earlier free-swinging display had allowed the Sixers to set a steep target, while also demonstrating the benefits of retirement from international cricket. Haddin's intentions were brazen but his head was clear, and eight fours scorched from his blade in addition to a pair of sweetly struck sixes.
Maddinson and Silk each offered sturdy support, the former skating to 21 in a matter of minutes, the latter working the ball around intelligently but also clearing the ropes twice. Cameron Boyce and Dan Christian each bowled tightly for the Hurricanes, but their efforts were to be totally overshadowed by Lyon, much to the delight of the 20,072 in attendance.
The Sixers' only minor concern was an apparent leg twinge for Haddin when batting. He was able to keep wicket without too much trouble, but will need to see how the injury cools down ahead of the next match against the Melbourne Renegades on Wednesday. "I went to turn and I was just a bit short, my spikes caught and I went to go again and something just caught at the back of my leg," he said. "It felt all right keeping ... just getting old probably."
Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @danbrettig