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Match Analysis

Burns, Aley, Healy and Perry deconstruct dramatic WBBL run-out

With two to defend and odds stacked against them, a sensational piece of teamwork helped Sydney Sixers secure a tie, and then a comfortable win in the ensuing Super Over

Melinda Farrell
Ellyse Perry celebrates Sophie Molineux's run-out, Sydney Sixers women v Melbourne Renegades women, WBBL semi-final, Sydney, January 19, 2019

Ellyse Perry celebrates Sophie Molineux's run-out  •  Getty Images

Sydney Sixers were defending a total of 131 in their semi-final match against Melbourne Renegades. When Ellyse Perry ran in to bowl the final ball of the innings, the Renegades needed three, with Sophie Molineux on strike and Claire Koski at the non-striker's end. Molineux's shot was on its way to a victory-securing boundary when a desperate dive from Erin Burns meant the batters had to run three to win. Burns flicked the ball back for Sarah Aley to pick up and throw to wicketkeeper Alyssa Healy, who turned and threw down the stumps at the bowler's end. The match was tied and the Sixers won comfortably in the ensuing super over to go through to the final against Brisbane Heat.
This is how the players who were involved saw the sensational last play of the innings.
Burns: I was standing at deep extra cover and I thought that Soph might target the short boundary on the leg side so I thought I wasn't going to be needed very much! More kind of running in and getting to the circle for backing up the throw. But obviously she opened up and sliced it through cover point.
Perry: I think it looked pretty touch and go in terms of where the ball was going to end up, whether it was going to go for a boundary or not. I think the first shot of the over was a really similar one and that went for four so, yeah, it was pretty touch and go.
Healy: If there was anyone in the competition who was ever going to get it, it was Erin Burns.
Burns: I run as hard as I can and… throw your body at it really.
I don't think we've had so much excitement and entertainment and emotions in the one ball
Sarah Aley
Aley: Well I was at third man and I also thought I was going to get the ball but then I knew Erin was faster than me so I basically just tried to hotfoot it as fast as I could over there so that if she did make it I was able to be there and support and throw it in.
I was in the best position to view that amazing piece of fielding. She did a fantastic job, full length dive. As I was getting closer to it I thought, 'this is going to hit the rope', but then she got low, got her hand to it and I could tell, even though they had to look at the replays and all of that to check, I knew from where I was that she was nowhere near the rope.
Burns: I just see Mitzy coming around from third man so I just tried to tap the ball back and she picked it up pretty quickly and saw that Midge [Healy] was in a pretty good position, so I just watched it all unfold from there.
Aley: The throw's actually a bit of a blur, I can't really remember it. I just remember picking it up and fanging it to Midge. I knew that was the closer end so it was probably better for me to throw to that end and then, if it did need to go to the other end, she was in a closer position and it was going to get there quicker.
Perry: Right next to me the non-striker, Claire Koski, turned to come back for three and I was thinking, 'well she's going to make that'. She had a bit of a head start. And then it was kind of like 'what's going to happen when Midge gets the ball, will she be able to get it up the other end?'
Healy: I just knew that Claire Koski would have been so far ahead of Soph when she was backing up at the non-striker's end and I could hear her pretty much over my right shoulder and I thought, 'I'm not going to have time to take my bails and throw at the other end so I'm just going to take a punt and throw at the other end, hopefully we could sneak them off guard'. Soph had been out there for 20 overs, had run really hard and I was hoping to catch her a little bit slower.
In terms of a team play I don't think I've ever seen a more special one in the context of the match and what effect it had on the game
Ellyse Perry
Ridiculous. I thought it was always a lose-lose situation anyway because I figured she might be home anyway. I'm just going to ping it and if I miss we lose. So it was just a spur of the moment thing. I obviously knew I needed to throw to that end and, you know, give me nine out of ten shots and I'll miss nine of them, so it was just one of those things that happened and I guess we were destined to make the final and we did it however we could.
Perry: I knew it was out as soon as it hit the stumps.
Burns: I was just ecstatic. I was pretty sure she was short of her ground and the thought didn't even cross my mind that I might have hit the rope so I was pretty confident.
Aley: Jubilation. I know that we didn't actually win the match [on that play] but the position that we were in to then get it to a Super Over meant that we were still in a position to win the game and get through to the final so our chances were still alive. I just started running in towards the wicket but Erin was behind me so I turned around and celebrated with her. We obviously had to wait for the replay but you could see where we were that she was out so it was a lot of excitement and jubilation.
Healy: It was just an unbelievable team play and something this team's really proud of that. We are a team and we all play together and that was just the ultimate example of that.
Aley: I don't think we've had so much excitement and entertainment and emotions in the one ball. The situation that it was to put us through to the final it was a pretty special feeling and a pretty special play.
Perry: In terms of a team play I don't think I've ever seen a more special one in the context of the match and what effect it had on the game. It was absolutely phenomenal and I know a lot of people have watched that footage a number of times but I think we'll be watching that for a long, long time to come down the track and hopefully it's symbolic of the culture we've created at this club but also what we stand for as a team.
Burns: It was one of those moments where everything just seemed to fit perfectly. To tap it back but then Sarah to come around and the perfect throw into Midge and then to spin around no look at the stumps and throw down the other end is pretty awesome. It was definitely a pretty wild finish.

Melinda Farrell is a presenter with ESPNcricinfo