Scintillating Head hundred seals Strikers victory


Travis Head rung in the new year with one of the finest innings in Big Bash League history, scoring a scintillating century as the Adelaide Strikers beat the Sydney Sixers by five wickets.

Having been set 177 to win, the Strikers made hard work of the run chase and needed 51 off the final three overs.

But Head came to the fore in scarcely believable fashion, powering his way to an incredible hundred with a bewitching individual performance.

The 22-year-old left-hander had 45 off 38 balls at the start of the 18th over but finished on 101 from 53 with seven sixes in his last 14 deliveries to seal a stunning victory.

Needing 13 to win in the final over, Head smacked back-to-back sixes to tie the game before ballooning another maximum behind square on the leg side to reach his ton and send the crowd of more than 46,000 inside the Adelaide Oval into raptures.

An opening stand of 66 between Ed Cowan (43) and Michael Lumb (31) had got the Sixers off to a strong start before Alex Ross' stunning catch ended the latter's innings.

Adil Rashid (3-34) then dismissed Nic Maddinson first ball and the England spinner's showing helped the Strikers reduce Sydney to 105-5 by the end of the 14th over.

However, a record BBL sixth-wicket partnership of 71 between Brad Haddin (54 not out ) and Johan Botha (38 not out) took the Sixers to a seemingly daunting total.

The Strikers had laboured in their reply and when captain Brad Hodge's exit for 17 left them on 113-4 in the 15th over, Adelaide's cause seemed lost.

Ross (1) fell shortly after but that only served to leave the stage for Head to steal the show and brilliantly guide the Strikers home.