A PLAYER of the match performance from Bathurst’s Lisa Griffith helped the Sydney Thunder to an eight-wicket triumph over fierce Women’s Big Bash League rivals the Sydney Sixes on Wednesday.
Griffith shone with the ball in the ‘Sydney smash’ at Spotless Stadium, removing star Sixes openers Ellyse Perry and Alyssa Healy in the same over before finishing with 2-24.
She then watched on as her Thunder team-mates ran down the 99 runs needed for victory with 14 balls remaining, the win lifting them to second on the Twenty20 competition ladder.
While Griffith missed the first Sydney derby of the season, which the Sixes won, on Wednesday Thunder was glad to have her services.
Thrown the new ball in the second over, Griffith had to contend with power play fielding restrictions being place. But that was not her only challenge.
The two players at the crease for the Sydney Sixes – Perry and Healy – had been named in the ICC women’s T20 international team of the year earlier in the week, with the latter ranked world number one.
On top of that, between them they had scored 856 runs prior to the derby.
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Griffith mixed things up in her first over, including a 75km/hr wide, slower ball, as she bowled four dots plus conceded a boundary and single.
In her second over two of her first three balls were dispatched to the boundary, but the Bathurst talent responded in fine fashion.
Firstly she bowled Perry for 13, then two balls later sent the ball clattering into the stumps again to send Healy on her way for nine.
When discussing her dismissal Perry admitted she should have been watching for a lower bouncing delivery, but still paid tribute to Griffith’s efforts.
“She’s bowling really well,” the WBBL’s leading run-scorer said of Griffith. “I probably made the wrong decision … I should have been on the front foot. But Lisa’s bowling really well at the moment, she bowled a really good delivery to Midge [Healy] as well.”
Griffith’s effort triggered a run of wickets, Thunder claiming six scalps for just 11 runs in the space five overs.
Having had taken 2-14 in her first spell, Griffith was next given the job of bowling the ninth over. That included five dots, a wide and a single.
Her final over was the last of the innings, one in which the Sixes – who had three wickets in hand – were desperate to reach triple figures.
Griffith conceded eight runs, two of her deliveries being dots, to restrict Sixes to 7-98. She finished with 2-24.
Thunder captain Alex Blackwell and former Australian Julia Price were others who praised the efforts of Griffith, who now has eight scalps for the season.
“I think LG was outstanding. She really sticks well to her plans and bowls well into the wicket,” Blackwell said.
“It was a magnificent over from Lisa Griffith, that says something when you bowl two quality players like that,” Price added.
The next assignment for Griffith and her team-mates is a weekend double-header against the Melbourne Stars. They play at Blacktown on Saturday and Bankstown on Sunday.