The calm before the storm: Ruth Johnston and Rachel Priest stepping onto the field before the carnage of the powerplay. (Photo: Hobart Hurricanes - Twitter)

Young Hobart Hurricane batter Ruth Johnston was a shining light in the Hurricanes loss to the Brisbane Heat.

Young Hobart Hurricane batter Ruth Johnston was a shining light in the Hurricanes’ loss to the Brisbane Heat.

After losing the toss and being sent in to bat first, the start to the Hurricanes’ batting innings couldn’t have gotten off to such a worse start with captain Rachel Priest dismissed for a golden duck off the first delivery of the match by an amazing ball by Courtney Sippel.

To make matters worse, Mignon du Preez followed three balls later picking out the fielder at extra cover, leaving the Hurricanes 2-4 off the first six deliveries.

Nicola Carey (five from four balls) had a short stay at the crease, opener Ruth Johnston faced her first ball of the innings at the start of the third over, she had seen three wickets fall before she faced a ball. Sasha Moloney (0 from five) was dismissed in the next over, leaving the Canes’ 4-16 off four overs, in the powerplay they only scored 33 runs.

Speaking to the media, post-match Ruth Johnston explained her thoughts about what was happening during that period.

“I knew I had to stick in there, try and chip away at the runs,” she said.

“I believe in our middle order and I knew if we could get a small partnership going, it would keep on building and we could get [to] a decent score which today was pretty good but there a pretty good batting side so it was pretty tough to defend that,”

The wicket of Moloney brought young Indian aggressive batter, Richa Ghosh, to the crease. Ghosh and Johnston put on a 45 run partnership to help anchor the Hurricanes innings. Their partnership ended in the 11th over as South African Anneke Bosh dismissed Ghosh for 22 runs.

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Molly Strano and Ruth Johnston looked to consolidate the runs for attacking the last five overs. Johnston said they were focused on starting a partnership, looking to get a run a ball and getting some boundaries when they could.

“Molly and I had a conversation out there we were like ‘Yep six runs per over, [and in] the last few [overs] we can have a go cause we know [we have] batters in the shed’,” she said.

The Hurricanes scored 49 runs off the last five overs thanks to some late hitting from Ruth Johnston (47 off 42), Molly Strano (33 off 24) and Tayla Vlaeminck (11 off 6) accelerating the run rate, pushing their total to 8-132 off their 20 overs.

Setting the Heat 133 to chase, the Hurricanes needed to make a good start with the ball, however, they struggled to keep the in-from Georgia Redmayne and Grace Harris quiet. The opening pair scored 45 runs in the powerplay.

Not long after, Australian representative Nicola Carey was able to seize the wicket of Redmayne dismissing her for 22 runs. Carey followed that up bowling the in-form big hitter Georgia Voll for a three-ball duck, keeping the Hurricanes in the game.

Voll’s wicket brought 23-year-old Mikayla Hinkley to the crease. The Hurricanes were able to tie her down early in her innings, but they couldn’t stop her boundary hitting.

The Hurricanes were unable to create chances in the death overs to dismiss the set batters.

Hinkley (49 off 40) and Harris (57 off 46) guided the Heat to its third straight victory of WBBL}07 making an 86 run partnership steering Brisbane to 2-138 off 18.3 overs, securing the win with nine balls to spare.

The Hurricanes could be without captain Rachel Priest for a few games, as the wicketkeeper looked to have injured her fingers in the first over keeping a ball in their bowling innings, she had to leave the field and didn’t return.

The Hobart Hurricanes have a short turnaround before their next game, facing the Melbourne Stars on November 27 at UTAS Stadium from 4:50 pm.

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