Hobart Hurricanes reel in Melbourne Stars for third straight WBBL win

Nicola Carey hit an unbeaten 41 for Hobart to help her side to a WBBL win over Melbourne Stars.

Nicola Carey hit an unbeaten 41 for Hobart to help her side to a WBBL win over Melbourne Stars. Photo: AAP

Nicola Carey and Naomi Stalenberg have combined to steer Hobart Hurricanes to their third successive WBBL win, beating Melbourne Stars by six wickets at Blundstone Arena.

After Australian captain Meg Lanning’s lone hand of 75 drove the Stars to 8-142, Carey (41 not out) and Stalenberg (33 not out) combined for an unbroken 69-run stand to raise victory with four balls remaining in Hobart on Thursday night.

Carey – in her first knock of the tournament – and Stalenberg were untroubled at the crease, joining forces at 4-74 after 12 overs following the dismissal of skipper Elyse Villani (41).

“It was a tricky wicket to try to bat on, as you could see from both innings,” said Carey, who was named player of the match.

“I thought the bowlers did a really good job and contained them pretty well. I think we’re starting to come together nicely.”

Villani’s opening partner Lizelle Lee holed out to Alice Capsey for 17, before English import Bryony Smith’s woes continued when she was lbw for one.

Annabel Sutherland (2-32) picked up Villani and Heather Graham to move to the top of the wicket-taking leaderboard, but the Stars had too few runs to defend.

The Stars’ evening started poorly, with Molly Strano delivering a first-up wicket-maiden, Sophie Read holing out to Carey for a fourth-ball duck.

Carey collected her second catch in as many overs when she pouched an attempted upper-cut from Capsey (3) off Shabnim Ismail, the visitors crashing to 2-6.

Lanning watched helplessly from the non-striker’s end as the Stars fell to 4-46 when Sutherland (12) and Maia Bouchier (10) departed.

Prized English recruit Sophia Dunkley (17) continued her struggles, while at the other end Lanning ended hers.

The Australian captain, who had scored only 24 from her previous four knocks, raised her 29th WBBL half-century before exploding in the power surge.

Lanning’s fine hand ended when she was caught by her opposite number, Villani.

Ismail (3-34), Strano (2-14) and Maisy Gibson (2-34) led a spirited performance from Hobart’s attack.

“It was a bit heartbreaking at the end, knowing we were in it for so long and let it slip,” Melbourne off-spinner Sasha Moloney said.

“I think we were about 20 (runs) short in the end.”


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