Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Hodge hammered nine boundaries during his knock of 61
Flamboyant batsman Brad Hodge ensured the Melbourne Stars maintained their perfect record this season as he smashed a breathtaking half-century to lead his side to a 20-run win over the Perth Scorchers at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Hodge was well supported by pace bowler John Hastings, who took three wickets in the Stars’ eighth consecutive win.
Hodge’s decision to bat first after winning the toss may have worked in his favour, but the same could not be said about England’s Luke Wright, who only made 13 runs before he was stumped by Sam Whiteman off the bowling of Michael Beer.
Pakistan all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez also failed to have an impact as he was caught by Adam Voges at first slip off the bowling of Beer for just four runs.
David Hussey fared no better as he scored six runs before being run out by Scorchers captain Simon Katich.
Hodge and Marcus Stoinis stabilised the innings with a 60-run partnership, during which Hodge brought up his half-century, before Stoinis was given out lbw off the bowling of Voges for 25.
Hodge ended up making 61 off 43 balls, which included nine boundaries, before he was caught by Brad Hogg off the bowling of Alfonso Thomas.
The Stars ended up scoring 161 off their 20 overs thanks to wicketkeeper Peter Handscomb’s quickfire 25 and Hastings’ 13.
Beer was the pick of the bowlers with two wickets, while Thomas and Voges chipped in with one wicket apiece.
Chasing 162 to win, the Scorchers got off to a terrible start as their top three batsmen were back in the pavilion with only 38 runs on the board.
Voges and Katich stemmed the bleeding with a vital 54-run partnership before Voges at caught by Daniel Worrall at short cover off the bowling of Hastings for 29.
Hastings struck again just five balls later as he clean bowled Ashton Turner for one run.
Pat Cummins only made seven runs before he was brilliantly caught by Wright off the bowling of Worrall.
Katich ended up making 30 off 23 balls, which included three boundaries, before he was caught by Hafeez at midwicket off the bowling of Clive Rose.
Despite Jason Behrendorff’s fantastic 26, the Scorchers found themselves well short of their target at the end of their 20 overs.
Hastings was the most successful bowler with three wickets, while Worrall snapped up two and Rose and Scott Boland picked up one wicket each.