Stars lose out to Thunder in Canberra | Melbourne Stars - BBL
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Stars lose out to Thunder in Canberra

29 December 2020

The Melbourne Stars have lost out to the Sydney Thunder by 75 runs at Manuka Oval after a down game from Team Green.

English power-hitter Alex Hales had the better of the Stars attack with a blistering knock of 71 from just 29 deliveries as the Thunder registered 7/219, the equal-third highest score in Big Bash League history. 

The Stars started strongly in pursuit of the sizeable total, with openers Marcus Stoinis, who posted a quick-fire 27, and Andre Fletcher hitting 42 runs from the powerplay.

But two wickets in consecutive overs from Thunder spinner Chris Green, who claimed 3/34, slowed the run rate for the Stars making it an uphill battle from there. 

Stars sensation Nicholas Pooran was unable to replicate his heroics from his first BBL innings but got off to a flying start with a monster six over fine leg. 

Skipper Glenn Maxwell become the fourth player of all-time to score 2000 BBL runs in his 23-run knock. 

The opposing skipper captain Callum Ferguson was the anchor of the Thunder innings after Hales departed, scoring 51 from 33 balls. 

Paceman Billy Stanlake took back-to-back wickets in four deliveries thanks to an athletic diving catch from Fletcher and a safe take from X-Factor sub Ben Dunk, finishing with 2/19 from 2 overs.

Dunk provided some late fireworks smashing three sixes in a row - the Stars clubbing 10 for the innings - holing out the next ball attempting to smack a fourth into the stands. 

In the first innings, the bromance of Adam Zampa and Stoinis combined for two of the leg-spinner’s three wickets, claiming the vital scalps of Ferguson and Englishman Sam Billings.

Zampa came back well after being targeted early in match by Hales and contributed 23 runs with the bat - the highest total in his BBL career - late in the piece as the tail wagged.  

Returning batsman Nic Maddinson was the unlikely wicket-taker yet again - like his last cameo with the ball in his last match against Perth Scorchers - dismissing the dangerous Hales with a fantastic caught and bowled in the eighth over. 

The result compounded the unfortunate news that fast bowler Nathan Coulter-Nile will miss the next 3-4 weeks with a calf strain.