Marcus Stoinis silences critics as Stars overcome Chris Lynn to make BBL history

The all-rounder had been in horrible form so far this BBL season.

Marcus Stoinis, Beau Webster and Chris Lynn in the BBL.
Marcus Stoinis and Beau Webster (L) got the Melbourne Stars home against Chris Lynn (R) and the Adelaide Strikers. Image: Getty

Marcus Stoinis has returned to form in staggering fashion, blasting the Melbourne Stars to a record run-chase against the Adelaide Strikers in the BBL on Sunday night. After Chris Lynn (83 not out off 42 balls) and Matt Short (56 off 32) lifted the Strikers to 4-205 at Adelaide Oval, Beau Webster (66 not out off 48) and Stoinis (55 not out off 19) got the Stars home with six balls remaining for their highest run-chase ever.

Stoinis entered the match in horrible form, having scored just 30 runs for the tournament at an average of six. He was dropped for the finals at the recent Cricket World Cup and copped plenty of criticism from fans for his lacklustre performances for Australia.

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But the all-rounder silenced his critics and the bumper crowd of 42,505 on New Year's Eve, battering the Strikers during the historic scenes. In the 19th over, Stoinis blasted James Bazley for 6-2-4-6-6 to seal the victory in a brilliant return to form.

"I haven't put a swing on one yet this year so that was nice," Stoinis said. "I don't think it (chase) ever got out of control, which is a testament to the guys batting at the top. This wicket, for a batter, is the best in the country."

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Earlier, Lynn and captain Matt Short had the Strikers eyeing a total of 250 as they took the Stars' bowling attack to all parts. After D'Arcy Short (25) spooned a return catch to spinner Corey Rocchiccioli, Short and Lynn smashed 83 off the next five overs and moved into first and second place on the competition's run-scoring leaderboard.

The skipper thumped three sixes before lofting a knuckle-ball from Glenn Maxwell (2-21) to Webster at deep mid-wicket. Maxwell's variation also claimed Adam Hose for 14 as the Strikers' progress stalled, but Lynn continued to fire against a depleted, rattled Stars attack.

Jamie Overton, Marcus Stoinis and Beau Webster in the BBL.
Jamie Overton congratulates Marcus Stoinis and Beau Webster after the Melbourne Stars' win over Adelaide Strikers. (Photo by Sarah Reed/Getty Images)

The BBL's all-time leading run-scorer, Lynn belted four sixes and was supported by Jamie Overton at the death. But no total was ever enough considering the mood Stoinis was in.

"We're not bowling well as a unit," said Cameron Boyce, who went for 1-15 off four overs and was the only Strikers bowler to go at less than 10-an-over. "That's been a bit of a trend for us the last few games. We need to figure out how to come out of that surge a bit better."

Marcus Stoinis, pictured here as the Melbourne Stars beat the Adelaide Strikers in the BBL.
Marcus Stoinis returned to form as the Melbourne Stars beat the Adelaide Strikers. (Photo by Sarah Reed/Getty Images)

After starting the season with three losses, the Stars have now won three on the trot to move into the top four. The Strikers have one win from five matches despite their power-packed batting line-up.

“I think we’ve still got more to prove,” Stoinis said. “We’ve gone from a team where the finals chat used to be ‘Oh, we haven’t won, but we make it every year’ to ‘We haven’t made finals for three years’.

“So, there’s an expectation from us, especially those of us that have been here for a long time, that we’re gonna be there on the last day then it’s up to that day as to what happens. It’s nice to have three wins in a row, nothing has changed too much, but the momentum is there. It’s starting to feel like - dare I say it – the Stars of old.”

with AAP

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