Amanda-Jade Wellington produced the best bowling performance in WBBL history as the Adelaide Strikers dominated the Challenger final against the Brisbane Heat on Wednesday night.
After being sent in to bat, the Heat were restricted to 8-114, largely thanks to Wellington’s heroics.
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Brisbane’s batters had no answer for the leg-spinner, who finished with remarkable figures of 5/8 off her four overs — breaking Molly Strano’s record of 5/15 from the first season of the WBBL.
Wellington was in fine form, tossing the ball up and getting plenty of turn on the Adelaide Oval pitch, dismissing the Heat batters in all manner of different ways.
Opener Grace Harris was out stumped, Mikayla Hinkley was caught at first slip and Laura Kimmince was out to a brilliant diving catch by Bridget Patterson in the outfield.
Such was Wellington’s command over the game, at one stage she was on a hat-trick and her last over was a maiden.
In response, the Strikers made short work of the chase, reaching the required target of 119 in the 17th over to win by eight wickets with 21 balls to spare.
Speaking after the match, Wellington was ecstatic with her performance but graciously thanked her teammates for their tidy work in the field.
“Who would have thought,” she joked. “I can’t thank my fielders enough. Unbelievable performance out there today. Incredible.
“I felt really confident out there. At the start I felt the batters were stuck in the crease, so I said to myself, ‘Toss it up there, trust the wicket to turn it’ and the fielders backed me up really well.
“We saw Bridget Patterson take an absolute screamer out on the boundary. She’s been supporting me all tournament.”
The victory means the Strikers next face the Melbourne Renegades on Thursday night for a spot in the final against the Perth Scorchers on Saturday.
“One down, two to go. That’s pretty much how we’re putting it,” Wellington said.
“The girls have had such an incredible season so far. The momentum towards the end has been incredible and I think in tournaments like these it’s really crucial.”
It was certainly a game to remember for Wellington, who brought up her 100th WBBL wicket in her 100th game and was named player of the match.
With first-choice Australian leg-spinner Georgia Wareham recently suffering an ACL injury, Wellington did her chances of being picked for the upcoming multi-format Ashes series no harm.
“If it happens, it happens,” Wellington told ABC radio of her aspirations to play for Australia. “I’ll be disappointed if it doesn’t but if it comes I’ll take it with two hands.”