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Sixers stun Thunder on home turf

16 January 2016

Over 12,000 on hand to support the Women's Sydney Smash

The Sixers batters combined to set up their seventh straight win of the season, posting the second highest total in WBBL01 to date.

Sixers sprung out of the blocks but found themselves under early pressure when they lost skipper Ellyse Perry who never got going. Alissa Healy (44 off 35) and Ash Gardner (55 off 36) steadied the ship and then some, however, with a partnership of 76. 

They teased the fielders with cunning placement, though both rode their luck as the Thunder spilled crucial chances in the field. Undeterred from going aerial, Gardner brought up her half century with a towering six down the ground.

The Thunder were made to pay for their mistakes as the run rate climbed. Enter Sara McGlashan. Using the platform set by Healy and Gardner, McGlashan launched. What looked a dashing cameo soon became the main event in an unbeaten 49 off 22 balls.

A couple of late runouts couldn’t derail an imposing 6-172, the second highest total posted in the WBBL so far this season.

The Sixers dominance built steadily along with a vocal SCG crowd of 12,220. And any hopes of a bright start from the Thunder were derailed by the brilliant Marizanne Kapp (4-18), with help from a diving Lauren Smith catch.

The telepathic connection of Healy and Sarah Aley (2-35) was also on show with a fine leg-side stumping, consigning the dangerous Naomi Stalenburg to a golden duck, and the Thunder to an improbable chase.

Nicola Carey (53 off 36) and Erin Osborne (36 off 32) offered spirited middle order defiance but the visitors could only reach 9-151 from their 20 overs. Lisa Sthalekar (3-34) cleaned up in the death overs to cap a fine team performance.

Post-game, Gardner confessed some added motivation in front of the cameras.

“I tried to score runs for the TV and it's a massive achievement to get runs in front of such a crowd and everyone at home.

“We’ve started to gel as a team so now it’s seven in a row and, hopefully, eight tomorrow will cement our spot in the finals.”

The magenta keeps marching on. The Sixers face the Hurricanes in Hurstville on Sunday at 10am in their crucial final match of the regular season.

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