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WBBL round-up: Kimmince cameo stuns Scorchers, Sutherland shines for Stars, Strikers stumble against Renegades

Laura Kimmince smashed 40 not out from 17 balls to take Brisbane Heat home, while Annabel Sutherland and Carly Leeson produced career-bests as both Melbourne teams notched wins

Laura Kimmince and Charli Knott celebrate, Brisbane Heat vs Perth Scorchers, WBBL, Hurstville Oval, Sydney, November 18, 2020

Laura Kimmince and Charli Knott celebrate  •  Getty Images

Brisbane Heat 6 for 139 (L Kimmince 40*, Glenn 4-31) beat Perth Scorchers 8 for 137 by four wickets
A stunning display of hitting from Laura Kimmince helped the Brisbane Heat steal victory from the Perth Scorchers and put them one step closer to a guaranteed finals berth.
The Heat slumped to 5 for 87 in the 15th over chasing the Scorchers' target of 138. That left the Heat needing 50 from 34 balls with just five wickets in hand. But Kimmince, who delivered a 10-ball 23 in a winning chase against Sydney Sixers on Tuesday, produced another staggering cameo smashing an unbeaten 40 from just 17 balls to see her side home with four balls to spare.
Some of her strokeplay was breathtaking. Sarah Glenn had done all the damage for the Scorchers taking three of the first five wickets and was brought on in the 18th over with the Heat still needing 27 to win from 18 balls. Kimmince switch-hit the England spinner over point for six and swept her conventionally behind square for four in consecutive balls.
Glenn knocked over Amelia Kerr to finish with 4 for 31 but the damage was done. Kimmince clubbed two more boundaries off Heather Graham at the start of the 19th over to leave just 8 runs to win from 10 balls. Charli Knott hit the winning runs with four balls to spare.
Earlier, Kimmince also played her part in the field taking a spectacular one-handed diving catch at backward point to remove the Scorchers stand-in skipper Beth Mooney. The left-hander was cruising on 49 with the Scorchers on track to post a score above 150. But Kimmince's freakish catch stalled all momentum as Kerr, Jess Jonassen, and Grace Harris squeezed the Scorchers lower order taking five wickets between them. Mathilda Carmichael made 35 from 23 balls to drag the total up to 8 for 137 after five Scorchers batters fell for single-figure scores.
Melbourne Stars 3 for 159 (Sutherland 72, Vakarewa 2-28) beat Hobart Hurricanes 8 for 120 (Priest 24, Brunt 2-12) by 39 runs
A career-best 72 from Annabel Sutherland led the Melbourne Stars to an easy win over Hobart Hurricanes at Hurstville Oval.
Sutherland was promoted up the order to bat at No.3 and took full advantage making her maiden half-century in the WBBL.
Sutherland and Elyse Villani combined for a 120-run stand that began in the sixth over after the fall of Meg Lanning and ran all the way until the 20th over. Villani produced her second half-century of the tournament, making 56 from 47 balls with three fours and two sixes. But she played second fiddle to Sutherland. The 19-year-old cracked five fours and two sixes. Both Villani and Sutherland fell to Belinda Vakarewa in the final over with Vakarewa finishing with tidy figures of 2 for 28.
The Hurricanes never got close in the chase with only two of the top six, Rachel Priest and Chloe Tryon, striking at the required rate. Katherine Brunt took 2 for 12 from her four overs while Sophie Day picked up 2 for 24. The pair combined for the unusual dismissal of Tryon. Brunt took the catch on the deep midwicket rope but not without drama. The ball initially burst through her and split her lip open, yet she somehow clung onto the rebound before heading off for some minor treatment. Sutherland also took a wicket to claim the Player-of-the-Match honours.
The win ensured the Stars will finish on top of the WBBL table, with two games still to play, while the Hurricanes will almost certainly miss the finals.
Melbourne Renegades 3 for 123 (Molineux 52, McGrath 1-19) beat Adelaide Strikers 6 for 122 (Wolvaardt 36, Leeson 3-14) by 7 wickets
Three wickets to Carly Leeson and a half-century from Sophie Molineux helped the Melbourne Renegades to a comfortable seven-wicket win at the Sydney Showgrounds, delivering a huge blow to the Adelaide Strikers' finals hopes in the process.
The Renegades had won just two games coming in and the Strikers needed a win to maintain a spot in the top four but a dismal batting display saw the Strikers crawl to just 7 for 122. Leeson produced career-best bowling figures as she strangled the Strikers and removed two of their best players in Laura Wolvaardt and Stafanie Taylor. Wolvaardt produced some stunning strokes in her 36 but did struggle for fluency as she chewed 40 balls. Madeline Penna, fresh off a dazzling match-winning half-century on Tuesday, only faced 13 balls and she smacked two sixes and two fours to make 26 not out but it wasn't enough.
The Renegades made light work of the chase. Molineux and Lizelle Lee cruised to a 77-run opening stand with Lee making 48. Molineux kicked on to a classy half-century but fell with just 13 runs needed. The Renegades won with 16 balls to spare and seven wickets in hand to move off the bottom of the table.
Sydney Sixers 7 for 147 (van Niekerk 45, Healy 44, Johnson 3-25, Ismail 2-32, Darlington 2-27) beat Sydney Thunder 8 for 143 (Litchfield 46, Haynes 27, Burns 3-28, Aley 2-29) by 4 runs
The Sydney Sixers ended a five-match losing streak to stay in the qualification race, clinching a nail-biting four-run win against the Sydney Thunder at the Sydney Showground Stadium. Alyssa Healy had provided the batting firepower up front, and the Sixers were well on top when a stunning counter-attack by Phoebe Litchfield took the game till the final ball, but offspinner Erin Burns ensured there wouldn't be a miracle win for the Thunder.
Put in to bat, the Sixers were driven by Healy's attacking 22-ball 44 at the top of the order. Healy did almost all the scoring in a 55-run opening stand with captain Ellyse Perry (28 off 26). Dane van Niekerk (45 off 39) and Perry kept the scoring healthy after Healy fell, but a collapse in the death overs meant the Sixers finished short of where they might have expected to. They were 2 for 129 with four overs to go, but ended up on 7 for 147.
Sammy Jo-Johnson did most of the damage with her 3 for 25, while Shabnim Ismail had struck the key blows earlier, having got both openers.
The Thunder's chase lacked momentum at the start, with regular wickets keeping the scoring in check. At 5 for 81, with 67 needed off 36, the game seemed to have slipped out of their grasp. Litchfield, on 11 off 18 at that point, then found her range as she went on to smash 35 off her next 18 balls.
It came down to Burns, who had already taken two wickets, bowling the last over with 18 to get. The first two balls yielded only one run, but Litchfield then hit three successive fours to bring the equation to five needed off the final ball. Burns had the final say as Litchfield was castled last ball, for 46 off 36, giving the Sixers a thrilling win.