A quality half-century from skipper Jess Duffin and three wickets from Molly Strano has sewn up a finals berth for the Melbourne Renegades with a win over Sydney Thunder at the Junction Oval. The Renegades win ensured two-time WBBL champions Sydney Sixers will miss the finals for the first time in tournament history.
Duffin made 53 from 44 balls with six fours and a six to help her side post a competitive 6 for 151. She got good support from Danni Wyatt who made 44 from 31 after the Renegades had slumped to 2 for 6 in the third over courtesy two wickets from two balls by Samantha Bates. Rene Farrell went wicketless in her final WBBL game.
The Thunder's chase wilted under the pressure of the disciplined Renegades attack. They could not score at better than a run a ball in the powerplay. Strano removed three of the top four inside the first 13 overs while Alex Blackwell was run out in her final WBBL innings. The Thunder finished 29 runs short.
Sydney Sixers v Adelaide Strikers
A blistering 38-ball 84 from Alyssa Healy set up a consolation win for Sydney Sixers against Adelaide Strikers, as they finished their campaign in fifth place. The Strikers finished second despite the loss, and have a semi-final berth booked.
Healy's was a largely single-handed effort that included seven sixes and as many fours, but she found support from Ashleigh Gardner, as the duo added 65 from 38 balls, and later from Marizanne Kapp, who contributed 24 before falling in the final over as Sixers posted 177. Healy reached her fifty in 26 balls, before a rapid acceleration saw her add another 31 in just 12 deliveries. A hundred was there for the taking with more than six overs left but she was cleaned up by Suzie Bates, which meant only 44 came from the last 39 balls.
The Strikers lost momentum as quickly as they had gained it, off to a disastrous start with Bates falling for a duck to Stella Campbell, and Tahlia McGrath becoming her second victim for 6. Sophie Devine, though, wasn't done plundering runs this season, hammering a 38-ball 60 - her eighth fifty - that saw her displace Beth Mooney as the highest run-getter. While she was at the crease, the Strikers were in with a shot, but after she fell to Erin Burns in the 15th leaving them 60 to get from 33, their challenge petered out, as they fell a good 13 runs short.
Melbourne Stars v Brisbane Heat
Teenaged legspinner Amelia Kerr finished with impressive figures of 2 for 4 in the two overs she bowled in the 10-overs-a-side encounter, while left-arm spinner Jess Jonassen bagged 2 for 14 as they ran through the Stars' batting line-up to restrict them to 87 for 6. After a strong 45-run opening partnership between Lizelle Lee and Elyse Villani, Jonassen triggered a collapse with the former's wicket. Stars then lost six wickets for 34 runs in space of 4.4 overs, Villani top-scoring with 25 off 17 balls.
In reply, Mooney started off strongly, hitting seven fours on her way to an unbeaten 27-ball 50. Laura Harris chipped in with a 13-ball 21 as Heat chased the target down in 8.4 overs.
Perth Scorchers v Hobart Hurricanes
Meg Lanning struck her first WBBL century to ensure the Perth Sorchers entered finals weekend on the back of victory with a 35-run win over the Hobart Hurricanes at Lilac Hill. Lanning and Nicole Bolton (44) added a monstrous 154 for the first wicket with Lanning finishing on 101 off 67 balls in a total of 4 for 167. The Hurricanes' chances of chasing it down disappeared when Nicola Carey, Heather Knight and the big-hitting Chloe Tryon fell in the space of two overs.