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Bat maker Josh Brown blasts Brisbane Heat to BBL win against Sydney Sixers

A whirlwind Josh Brown innings has laid the platform for Brisbane's BBL win over the Sydney Sixers.

A whirlwind Josh Brown innings has laid the platform for Brisbane's BBL win over the Sydney Sixers. Photo: AAP

Josh Brown makes his own Cooper Bison bats and showed he can wield them too as he lit up the Gabba with a whirlwind half-century to inspire Brisbane Heat’s 15-run win over the Sydney Sixers.

The match had a sensational finish when Heat all-rounder Michael Neser caught Jordan Silk (41 off 23 balls) in the 19th over.

Having reached the ball just inside the boundary rope but been unable to complete the catch while inside them, Neser threw the ball in the air, went outside the field of play, jumped to toss the ball up once more while again airborne, then completed the catch inside the boundary rope.

Quick-thinking and all within the rules.

Neser told 7Cricket: “I knew (Matt) Renshaw did it a couple of years ago. I didn’t know if they had changed the rules, so I thought I would give it a crack. Thankfully they didn’t change the rules.”

The 29-year-old Brown earlier produced his whirlwind innings to score 62 off just 23 balls in Heat’s 5-224.

The Sixers made a gallant response in their pursuit of a BBL record run chase, but fell short to be all out from the final delivery for 209.

Heat needed something special to get their season moving and Brown provided it in front of 23,689 fans while using a bat he made himself.

He brought up his 50 in just 19 deliveries, the equal fifth fastest in Heat history in just his second BBL game.

Brown cleared the boundary six times with an assortment of scintillating strokes.

The Heat opener works with Cooper Cricket founder Rod Grey. He has crafted hundreds of Cooper bats himself, and repaired thousands for his cricket mates.

“I made my own bat, the Cooper Bison … it absolutely cannons off. It is one of the new ones I made myself and I fell in love with it,” Brown told AAP after his innings.

“All my mates call me ‘Bison’.”

Brown said “it wasn’t until I was 24 that I started to take it seriously and then I went from third grade to Queensland Second XI in the space of 18 months”.

Twenty20 franchises around the world will no doubt be making further inquiries about him.

Brown told AAP he would “love to” take his T20 game to the world and added that his philosophy while batting was “play with no fear”.

All-rounder Nathan McSweeney (84 off 51 balls) made a superbly paced maiden BBL half-century to lift Heat to its highest BBL score.

Sixers openers Josh Philippe (27) and James Vince (41) took a franchise record 54 runs off the four overs of the power play in pursuit.

Silk and all-rounder Hayden Kerr (27) added 54 in 26 balls for the sixth wicket, but the brilliant stumping of Kerr by Jimmy Peirson off spinner Matt Kuhnemann (2-31) proved crucial.

Neser’s catch to dismiss Sixers skipper Silk was the decisive moment in the run chase after he took 3-41 with the ball.

-AAP

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