A brilliant shot from the forgotten Brisbane Heat star Sam Heazlett gave his side a shock victory over the Sydney Thunder in their knockout clash with the BBL.
Set a goal of 159 to win, the Heat looked dead in the water midway through their pursuit, before an unbeaten 92-point stand between Heazlett and goalkeeper Jimmy Peirson brought Brisbane home.
Heazlett finished undefeated on 74 of just 49 deliveries, slamming six fours and three sixes, while Peirson finished undefeated on 43 of 24 deliveries, with two fours and three sixes.
Heazlett’s heats were made more exceptional by the fact that he suffered from an extremely slow start.
The left-hander managed just 19 races out of his first 26 deliveries, with no limits, before breaking 55 of his next 23 deliveries.
After the win, Heat skipper Chris Lynn praised Heazlett, whose career stalled after receiving a surprise Australian debut with ODI in 2017.
“We haven’t played the perfect game yet. We haven’t mixed the bat and the ball in one game, so hopefully it’s in the next one or in the final,” he said. told Fox Cricket.
“I’m really happy for Sam Heazlett, he had a difficult trot. It shows (what happens) when you hold on, you can’t score points when you’re sitting in the dugout.
“The confidence he will gain from it and the boys are getting better and better at the moment.”
The loss was a bitter pill to swallow for the Thunder, who have been the BBL’s form side for most of the competition.
Sent to bat by Lynn, Sydney stumbled to an under-par score of 8-158 over his 20 overs, with BBL’s leading scorer for this season, Alex Hales, failing to shoot.
A few vigorous late shots from Ben Cutting (34 of 18) gave the Thunder a brief glimmer of hope, but ultimately their bowlers didn’t have enough leads to play.
As the competition draws to a close for the Thunder, the Heat will next face the Perth Scorchers, just two wins from a feat that seemed impossible earlier in BBL10.