Michael Neser scored a hat-trick but couldn’t save the Brisbane Heat from falling to a four-wicket loss to Melbourne Renegades in the Big Bash.
Neser struck with the first pitch of the innings, before claiming back-to-back dismissals from Jake Fraser-McGurk, Nic Maddinson and Jon Wells to leave the Renegades 9-4, chasing 138.
But Andre Russell hit 57 from 42 balls, Akeal Hosein crushed 30 from 19 and Aaron Finch added an unbeaten 31 from 43 to see the Renegades go home with four balls in reserve in Geelong.
Heat earlier posted 137-8 after captain Jimmy Peirson added 45 later, with Tom Rogers taking 4-23 and Hosein claiming 3-26 for the Renegades.
Brisbane’s tally looked below par at the halfway point despite Peirson’s flurry, only for Aussie dressmaker Neser to appear to give his side control.
The Glamorgan player pulled out Sam Harper for a golden duck before Fraser-McGurk was caught by wicketkeeper Peirson with the last ball of his opening over.
He then struck with the first two balls of his second over to claim the ninth hat-trick in Big Bash League history. Renegade skipper Maddinson clipped the ball on his own stumps before Wells let in a delivery that dug in and knocked the stump off.
Russell responded with an onslaught of six, hitting six in total, including one to bump up his fifty on just 32 balls before edging out Mark Steketee.
The Renegades needed 48 of 33 at this point and Hosein, another West Indies all-rounder from Russell, took charge, hitting two fours and two sixes.
He picked Steketee’s Sam Billings to leave the Renegades needing nine out of seven, but Will Sutherland made sure it wouldn’t be a nervy final by kicking his first ball for six on the roof of the GMHBA Stadium.
Finch, who played a largely vigilant innings in support of Russell and Hosein, then picked up the victory by breaking the second ball in the final for four to take his side to 139-6.
The Renegades have now won their three games to start the season and are second behind the Adelaide Strikers, while the Heat are second after two losses.