Melbourne Renegades beat Sydney Thunder, Aaron Finch, news, scores, results, Big Bash League, scorecard, highlights,

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Melbourne Renegades veteran Aaron Finch has hit a superb 71 not out to guide his side to victory against the Sydney Thunder at Marvel Stadium on Sunday night.

The Thunder posted a competitive 6-174 to put their Friday night horror show – where they were bowled out for 15 – to bed after opting to bat first.

The Renegades needed 11 runs off the final over and Finch delivered the winning runs with one ball to spare as the hosts clinched a thrilling four-wicket victory.

Player of the match Finch said: “It got a little bit stressful towards the end there. I think you’ve always got confidence in your ability to get the team home in a situation like that, but you still need a six in that last over or a couple of boundaries and I was lucky enough to get one and then get my old legs back and forth a couple of times to get home.

“Close games are what it’s all about in T20 cricket. The margins are so small over a 14 game season. There might be 1 or 2 percent between every team in the competition but the teams that win those close games tend to make the finals.”

Having struggled for form for club and country in recent months, scoring just four in his opening BBL match of the season three days prior, it was a brilliant performance from the 36-year-old.

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MATCH CENTRE: Renegades vs Thunder teams, scorecard, videos, updates

Thunder star Jason Sangha injured his left shoulder while fielding in the 18th over and left the game to be assessed.

The Renegades had concerns off the field too when Nic Maddinson was forced down into the rooms.

The skipper rolled his ankle on a bail as he came in to celebrate the Rossouw LBW decision – before it was overturned.

He lasted a few overs in the field before heading to the dugout in concerning scenes. But he managed to return to field late in the innings and then opened the batting and made 39 runs off 28 balls.

Just 48 hours after their “car crash” showing against the Adelaide Strikers, where they were bowled out for the historic low of 15 runs, the Thunder elected to take their batting nightmares head on.

And they got Bronx cheers from the crowd when they reached 0-16 in the third over – surpassing the team’s entire effort on Friday night.

“That was just one of those nights that was so left field,” Fox Cricket’s Brad Haddin said.

“If you dwell on it too much, all of sudden your players start to cram up and they are too scared to express themselves.

“If they had to field again, all of a sudden they are thinking about what they’re going to do, how the wicket’s playing.”

Commentator David Hussey agreed it was the right move to bat first.

“Bowled out for 15 is a car crash of a night,” he said.

“Get back on the horse, open the batting and try and post a 180-190 score and hopefully defend that for the Sydney Thunder.”

But the Thunder were in early trouble at 3-52, with Matt Gilkes (3 off 8), Alex Hales (16 off 12) and Jason Sangha (10 off 14) unable to stick around against perennial cellar dwellers the Renegades.

“There’s a lot of pressure on Rilee Rossouw now,” Hussey said.

“How does he handle it?”

When Daniel Sams fell to a close Aaron Finch catch – that required the third umpire to deliver the out verdict after Finch himself doubted he took it cleanly, the Thunder were in all sorts at 4-57.

But Rossouw continued to embrace the challenge of leading the Thunder to a defendable total.

He smashed Tom Rogers for six but was given out LBW two balls later.

A quick review ensured Rossouw stayed at the crease, and he then sent Rogers over the ropes once again the next ball.

The star import then took 14 off three Andre Russell deliveries before reaching his half century in the 14th over.

“This is just brute power – it’s what he’s been doing in this form of the game for the last 12 months,” Haddin praised.

Rossouw (53 off 38) fell early in the power surge but Alex Ross (39 off 23) continued to hit out as the Thunder powered past 130.

Some late Ollie Davies hitting (33* off 18) lifted Sydney to 6-174 to set up a big run chase for the Renegades.

Pre-match Thunder coach Trevor Bayliss said his players were raring to go with an unchanged line up from the dire Strikers loss.

“Rather than sitting at home contemplating what went wrong, we can get straight back into it,” Thunder coach Trevor Bayliss said.

“We didn’t say too much in the dressing room after it to be honest.

“We’ll go out and make amends for it.

“It was hard to believe that you can nick every third ball.”

Relive the live blog below. If you can’t see it, click here


Renegades: Sam Harper (wk), Nic Maddinson (c), Jake Fraser-McGurk, Aaron Finch, Jonathan Wells, Andre Russell, Will Sutherland, Tom Rogers, Kane Richardson, Akeal Hosein, Mujeeb Ur Rahman

Thunder: Alex Hales, Matthew Gilkes (wk), Rilee Rossouw, Jason Sangha (c), Alex Ross, Daniel Sams, Oliver Davies, Chris Green, Gurinder Sandhu, Brendan Doggett, Fazalhaq Farooqi

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