Jos Buttler has offered up the most bizarre dismissal of this summer’s Big Bash League, but still helped the Sydney Thunder to a last-ball, one-run win over Perth.
The Scorchers appeared out of the match after falling to 5-54 early in their pursuit of the Thunder’s 6-154, before Ashton Turner almost got them home in the final over as part of an unbeaten 87-run stand with Will Bosisto (23no) on Wednesday.
Needing 20 off the bowling of Daniel Sams, Turner took the margin to four off the last ball before he could only manage a two down the ground in the Scorchers’ second straight loss.
Turner’s 60 not out was more than double the score of any other Perth batsman, as only he and the Thunder’s Callum Ferguson (42) and Buttler (55) looked comfortable on the low and slow pitch.
Already the competition’s leading run-scorer after the opening two-and-a-half weeks, Buttler’s knock came from 54 balls but had plenty of highlights as he played all around the ground.
He brought up his 50 with a “reverse slap” off Nathan Coulter-Nile, and had earlier ramped Jhye Richardson for six back over the keepers’ head.
However he fell getting too creative, trying to reverse sweep paceman Richardson but only succeeding in collecting his own stumps, out hit wicket.
In commentary, Aussie legend Brett Lee said he’d never seen someone hit their own stumps while trying a reverse sweep a fast bowler.
“He bowled a couple of good overs at me, I felt like he was going slow and wide. I missed the ball but got the stumps,” Buttler said.
“One of my favourite things in practice is trying to do new things and trying to master different shots.
“I like to have as many options to call upon as I can, and today I felt like I kept trying things.”
— Cricbuzz (@cricbuzz) January 2, 2019
— Brett Carey (@BrettPCarey) January 2, 2019
Well getting out hit wicket is a rare sight. But Buttler's done it and gone off 55. Thunder 5/115 #BBL08
— Davis Harrigan 🦁 (@DeadlineDavis) January 2, 2019
— The Cricket Times (@CricketTimesHQ) January 2, 2019
— Nick Rance (@NickRance11) January 2, 2019
His versatility was enough to put the Thunder in control given their spinning prowess on a wicket that suits their attack perfectly.
Spinners Fawad Ahmed, Jonathan Cook and Chris Green took 4-67 between them in 12 overs, with Ahmed the Thunder’s best with 2-22 from his four.
His first wicket came courtesy of a zooter which skidded on to trap Michael Klinger lbw for 20, while his second was to a brilliant one-handed Shane Watson grab at slip after Ashton Agar attempted to play against the spin.
Ahmed was also responsible for the only of the wickets not taken by the spinners, when he sensationally ran out Hilton Cartwright with one stump to aim at from backward point.
“It was really disappointing, it leaves a really bad taste in my mouth,” Scorchers star Turner said afterwards.
“I think our bowlers were brilliant like they have been all tournament. We haven’t scored as many runs as we have needed to so far.”
Meanwhile, Cameron Bancroft also hit 19 in his second game back from his nine-month ban stemming from the ball-tampering saga, before falling lbw to Cook.