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Katich, Hogg inspire Scorchers v Thunder

By Chris Pike
3 January 2014 10:34PM EST

VETERAN former internationals Brad Hogg and Simon Katich have inspired the Perth Scorchers to a six-wicket win with four balls remaining over the Sydney Thunder at the WACA Ground.

Left-arm chinaman Hogg led the way with the ball for the Scorchers as they restricted the Thunder to 6-157 off their 20 overs despite an impressive knock of 48 (30 balls) from Eoin Morgan and late order hitting from Jason Floros with 37 from 24 balls.

Hogg, soon to turn 43, claimed 2-20 from his four overs as he repaid the faith from the Scorchers for going for him while dropping left-arm orthodox spin pair Michael Beer and Ashton Agar.

Then 38-year-old Katich batted at No. 3 for the Scorchers with a broken finger and played an inspired knock with seven fours and two sixes as he made 75 from 42 balls as the Scorchers finished on 4-161 with four balls remaining in their innings.

The victory moves the Scorchers to a 2-2 record so far this BBL campaign while the Thunder remains winless after four matches and that streak is now 17 games overall in the competition dating back to 2012.

The Thunder batted first got off to a flying start with Sri Lankan Tillakaratne Dilshan hitting three early boundaries as they raced to 1-40 in the fifth over, but the Scorchers pegged things back from there.

Dilshan attempted a scoop shot without much reward in his opening game for the Thunder against the Melbourne Stars on New Year's Day, but it came off for the Sri Lankan at the WACA with him nailing two sweetly off Alfonso Thomas in the third over that went for 19 runs.

Dilshan was out leg before to Jason Behrendorff the next over for 14 from seven balls but only brought Thunder captain Hussey to the crease.

Youngster Daniel Hughes was looking good also for the Thunder racing to 24 from 19 balls with five boundaries but he bit off too much off the bowling of Yasir Arafat to fall with the score 2-40 as Hussey and Morgan came together.

The Thunder's innings hinged largely on their star international pair but almost ended early when Morgan was dropped by Hogg off Behrendorff when yet to score with the total 2-41.

However, things dried up for the Thunder with Behrendorff and Arafat bowling well but started to pick up when Morgan played some incredible shots.

Hussey didn’t last much longer, though, falling to a terrific catch in the deep by Craig Simmons off Marsh for 13 from 20 balls without a boundary.

Kurtis Patterson then had no idea against Hogg to be clean bowled for two with the Thunder slumping to 4-85 in the 12th over but Morgan was still there and was the key for the visitors.

Morgan continued to look tremendous and hit a six off a no-ball from Marsh, and then from the free-hit he was given out run out despite it appearing part of his bat was still grounded over the line.

However, the third umpire decided his entire bat had bounced up and wasn’t on the ground so he was out for 48 from 30 balls with his innings including six fours and two sixes.

The Thunder were then 5-113 in the 15th over and 6-116 shortly after when Ryan Carters was bowled by Hogg for one.

Late-hitting from Floros, though, with 36 from 23 balls with three fours and two sixes saved the Thunder and saw them end up with a competitive 6-157.

Dilshan opened up the bowling for the Thunder at the start of the Scorchers innings and bowled a solid first over for six runs, but Gurinder Sandhu went for 10 off the season as Perth built some momentum.

Chris Tremain came on to bowl the fifth over and went for just one run and then Dirk Nannes picked up the wicket of Craig Simmons for nine with the score 1-20 in the fifth over.

Katich then joined Shaun Marsh at the crease and the pair set the innings up nicely with a 30-run stand from just 11 balls before Marsh was caught at point by Dilshan off Tremain for 20 from 15 balls.

The Scorchers were 2-50 after six overs and even though the returning Adam Voges didn’t make much impact with just eight from 13 balls, Katich remained in control of the innings.

He reached 50 with just his 27th ball faced and he and Mitch Marsh began to make batting look simple in the run chase as the required rate got down to just a run a ball.

Katich ended up falling for a brilliant 75 from 42 deliveries with seven fours and two sides, all the better because of his broken finger but he had already set up the win for the Scorchers with the score 4-147 in the 18th over.

Marsh (31 not out) and Ashton Turner (3) safely guided the Scorchers to the comfortable win in the final over.

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