Two times the Perth Scorchers have had a home final in the Big Bash League, and two times they have ended up on the losing side. The Scorchers will be hoping it's third time luck when they host the Hobart Hurricanes in the BBL 03 final at the WACA on Friday.
Where to Watch Live
The Big Final is scheduled for a 4.45 local time (2.15 pm IST) start with live coverage on Star Sports 2 and Star Sports HD1. The match will be shown live on Sky Sports 2 in the UK, with the live streaming option HERE. Catch the action in Australia HERE, while Africa viewers can live stream the match HERE. Viewers in the US can watch the game live online HERE.
"It would mean a huge amount," Scorchers skipper Simon Katich said. "I came back for a reason a few years ago and that was to try and win a trophy. It's been a long time and it would be nice to do it on Friday night. That's not just personally, but obviously from a team point of view.
"When you see the amount of time and effort that goes in, not just from the players, but from support staff and admin, you realise that winning trophies is not easy, particularly in a competition like this, where there's eight very good teams.
"So to get to this stage is a very good achievement, but winning that trophy is what it's all about and that's what we wanted to do from the start of this tournament. Now we've still got plenty of work to do on Friday."
The Scorchers were put through the wringer in the semifinal against the Sydney Sixers at the SCG on Wednesday. Having posted a formidable 193 for five in their 20 overs, thanks largely to a brilliant century from Craig Simmons, rain looked to play the party-pooper, only for the wet weather to relent just enough to play in the minimum five overs needed in the second innings.
The Sixers, needing 54 runs from those five overs, could only manage 48 for six, paving the way for the Scorchers' third straight BBL final.
"I thought 54 was a bit generous," Simmons said after the nervy win. "I thought 190-odd on the board the Sixers were going to struggle to get that.
"The boys did well with the ball, because to defend 54 in five overs is an awesome effort.
"Some good partnerships with myself and Kat (Simon Katich), and then myself and Vogesy (Adam Voges) really set us up."
The Scorchers received a boost ahead of the final with Shaun Marsh returning to the squad after a calf strain, and while the left-hander admitted he was a long shot to be fit for the big clash, it also leaves Katich and Justin Langer with a difficult decision to make, if the Australian international is indeed passed fit.
"He's done everything possible to get himself right," Katich said. "We'll have another interesting selection dilemma."
The Hobart Hurricanes booked their place in the Big final with an upset victory over the Melbourne Stars, who were the overwhelming favourites to win the tournament after their blistering performances in the league stage.
"We are peaking just at the right time," Hurricanes coach Damien Wright said. "We've had two fantastic performances against last year's champions, the Brisbane Heat and the previously undefeated Melbourne Stars in our last two matches.
"I know we've got what it takes to knock off Perth."
Hobart have lost a couple of key players for the final, however, with Ben Laughlin ruled out with a quad strain, while Pakistan all-rounder Shoaib Malik has been called back home to take part in his country's domestic T20 competition.
"Shoaib is a big loss for us," Wright added. "His bowling has been fantastic throughout the tournament and while he hasn't made the big score he would have probably liked he's done a job for us.
"[But], our squad is strong enough to cover the loss of these guys. We can bat really deep and we have plenty of bowling options."
Squads: Perth Scorchers: Simon Katich (capt), Michael Beer, Jason Behrendorff, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Patrick Cummins, Brad Hogg, Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Craig Simmons, Alfonso Thomas, Ashton Turner, Adam Voges, Sam Whiteman.
Hobart Hurricanes: George Bailey (capt), Tim Paine, Travis Birt, Aiden Blizzard, Doug Bollinger, Cameron Boyce, Xavier Doherty, Ben Dunk, Evan Gulbis, Ben Hilfenhaus, Dimitri Mascarenhas, Joe Mennie , Jon Wells.
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