David Miller's magnificent unbeaten 90 proved in vain as Hobart Hurricanes' hopes of making the Big Bash League play-offs were effectively ended with a 10-run defeat to Adelaide Strikers.

After Strikers skipper Travis Head (79 from 40 balls) had lifted his side to an imposing total of 186-5, Miller threatened to pull off a dramatic rescue act in Launceston on Sunday.

The South Africa batsman, who had made just 91 runs in his previous nine innings in the competition, plundered eight fours and five sixes in a 48-ball innings that kept Hobart in the hunt after a slow start to their chase.

However, the Hurricanes were still left with too much to do. They required 21 off the final over, bowled by Peter Siddle, and could only manage 10 runs as they finished on 176-6.

Adelaide are now up to second in the table, but yet another defeat leaves Hobart staring at likely elimination.

 

MILLER DROP PROVES COSTLY

Although he finally found form with the bat, Miller was guilty of missing a significant chance when Adelaide batted.

Head had only 21 to his name when he dragged Qais Ahmad to Miller at deep square-leg, but the fielder failed to take the opportunity.

The Hurricanes were left to rue the dropped chance as Head accelerated superbly, receiving fine support from Jono Wells (45 not out).

Matt Short also made a valuable contribution late in the Strikers innings with an unbeaten 33 from 20 deliveries.

 

AGAR AND SIDDLE SEAL VICTORY

Michael Neser removed Matthew Wade in the first over of the Hobart reply, before Wes Agar and Siddle took centre stage.

Agar picked up four of the other five wickets to fall on his way to career-best figures of 4-33, while Siddle (1-26 from four overs) was key in ensuring the required rate spiralled beyond the Hurricanes' control.

With Miller in the groove, Hobart still looked to have a slim chance at the start of the last over, but the vastly experienced Siddle held his nerve.

 

Jonathan Wells and Matthew Short put on a big partnership before Peter Siddle led the way with the ball as the Adelaide Strikers hammered the sorry Melbourne Renegades by 63 runs.

The Strikers scored 66 from the final five overs after a sedate start, with Wells (58 off 38) and Short (41 off 28) combining for 80 runs to help set a competitive total of 173-6 at the Adelaide Oval.

It was a score the Renegades, Big Bash League champions last season, never got near with only Beau Webster (49) and Shaun Marsh (21) making double figures in a risible chase.

Siddle (3-14) was chief protagonist, while Travis Head (2-26) - playing his first BBL game of the season - did early damage and Rashid Khan (2-19) also played an influential role in bowling the visitors out for 110.

The Strikers move third in the table, while the Renegades are 0-9 in an awful defence of their title.


WELLS AND SHORT STEP UP

Phil Salt (18), Jake Weatherald (27) and Head (22) all failed to build on starts and the Strikers were 81-4 when Harry Nielsen (4) trudged back in the 11th over.

But Wells upped the ante, with his knock including five fours and a six, while Short slogged three straight over the ropes in his innings.

It was a partnership that boosted the Strikers at the right time, with each member of the Renegades attack taking a wicket bar Dan Christian.


SIDDLE SINKS RENEGADES

The Renegades were up against it right from the off, with Head sweeping up Marcus Harris (4) in the very first over.

The sensational Siddle cleared up Sam Harper (5) from his first set of six and Marsh's promise was ended by the dangerous Head.

Rashid kept things tight and earned his reward with the wicket of Mohammad Nabi (6) before also ending the valiant resistance of Webster, who clobbered 49 off 33.

Siddle then accounted for Samit Patel (8) and Christian (2), with the rest of the Renegades tail unable to stop the rot.

Rashid Khan's thrilling cameo was not enough to stop the Adelaide Strikers suffering their first loss of the Big Bash season against the Sydney Thunder at Adelaide Oval.

An 18-ball 40 from Rashid, which included four fours and three sixes, looked set to inspire the Strikers to a fourth straight victory on Tuesday.

However, with Adelaide needing five off the final two balls to triumph, the Afghanistan international was run out attempting an ambitious second run.

Responsibility to clinch the win subsequently fell to Wes Agar but he was unable to connect sufficiently with Chris Morris' delivery and was run out by the South African, securing a three-run triumph for the Thunder.

 

FERGUSON SETS THE TONE

The Thunder set a target of 169 for the Strikers and owed much of that to the work of Usman Khawaja (63) and Callum Ferguson (73).

The duo combined for a 73-run stand after Alex Hales (4) fell, with Ferguson racking up seven fours and two sixes in an expansive knock that saw him move top of this season's scoring charts on 229.

Those maximums came off successive Rashid deliveries, one of which was ruled a no ball, before he holed out to deep midwicket.

Peter Siddle (2-30) claimed two wickets in a final over that went for just three runs, but Ferguson's efforts ended up proving the difference.

 

WEATHERALD MILESTONE

While his opening partner Phil Salt went for a six-ball duck and the Strikers were reduced to 36-3 after 5.4 overs, Jake Weatherald ensured their chase did not entirely collapse.

He became the second Striker to reach 1,000 BBL runs, joining Travis Head, and plundered a trio of sixes off one Jonathan Cook over en route to his second fifty of the season.

However, Daniel Sams (2-32) got Weatherald on 52 with a slower delivery, and when Arjun Nair (2-19) accounted for Cameron Valente and Cameron White in the same over the hosts were in trouble at 118-7.

 

RASHID RUFFLES FEATHERS

The Strikers required 53 runs off 28 balls when Rashid walked out to the middle and he certainly looked in the mood when he launched a six that left him on his backside over deep midwicket.

His display of varied and exciting striking continued when, on the back of a four and a third six of the match, he guided a magnificent checked sweep in front of square and to the ropes.

Rashid's back-to-back fours off Morris put Adelaide in position to snatch victory in the final over, but the Thunder just about managed to hold them off and seal an enthralling win.

Peter Siddle has called time on his international career after 11 years representing Australia in Test, ODI and Twenty20 cricket.

Veteran bowler Siddle made the announcement prior to day four of the second Test between Australia and New Zealand in Melbourne on Sunday.

The 35-year-old, who was overlooked for the final XI to face the Black Caps at the MCG, decided to call it quits on the international stage following 67 Tests.

Siddle – a member of Australia's triumphant Ashes series in England – claimed 221 wickets at 30.66 after making his Test debut against India in 2008.

The Victorian paceman, who is Australia's 13th highest Test wicket-taker, also played 20 ODIs and a pair of T20s for Australia.

"It's always hard to know when the right time is," Siddle Fox Cricket. "The Ashes was the main goal, to try and get on that touring party and be a part of that series.

"Once I'd ticked that off, I was talking to 'Painey' [captain Tim Paine] and JL [Justin Langer] – I thought I could have done it there, but the chance of getting one last crack if it came in Australia, to [have one more Test] at home would have been nice.

"To think as a young kid I wouldn't get a chance to play, I'm obviously very happy and a bit sad."

Australia head coach Justin Langer said: "The year after I retired from playing, Matty Hayden and Ricky Ponting were raving about this guy called Peter Siddle. If it came from them, you knew it was right and so it proved throughout his brilliant international career.

"He is an unbelievable bloke and an extremely good cricketer. He is the everything of what a team player is. He has given his heart and soul to the Australian team and the game of cricket.

"We'll always be thankful to him for what he's given to the national team, and for the critical role he played in helping us retain the Ashes in England this year. He's going out when he's still playing well which, in a perfect world, is something every athlete wants to do."

Captain Tim Paine added: "Sids has been the heart and soul of the team for a long time. I remember coming up through with him through the academies and even back then he was one of the great team men, something he has continued to this day.

"He has a massive heart and is a fantastic bowler. He'll be very much missed around the group. He's been unbelievably good for our younger fast bowlers over the last 18 months and been a great support for me during that time, as well.

"It's sad to see him leave international cricket, but the time is right for him. He's had a wonderful career, he's achieved a lot and I know he's still got plenty to offer in domestic cricket."

Peter Siddle's impressive death bowling held off Melbourne Stars as Adelaide Strikers handed them their first loss of the Big Bash League season with a five-run victory.

Australia international Siddle returned figures of 3-24 from his four overs, claiming the key wickets of Glenn Maxwell and Ben Dunk to ensure the Strikers defended their total of 174-4.

Jonathan Wells wrested control away from the Stars and ended with an unbeaten 68 off 46 deliveries – an 89-run partnership with Alex Carey anchoring the Strikers' innings.

Melbourne lost Nic Maddinson and Hilton Cartwright early on and were 66-3 when Maxwell went out to the middle for the final ball of the 10th over.

All-rounder Maxwell racked up four maximums in a blistering 43-run knock but chopped onto his middle stump when attempting a reverse scoop off Siddle.

Nathan Coulter-Nile (20 not out) kept the Stars in contention and with the visitors requiring six runs from the final two deliveries, Siddle picked out Dunk's leg stump with a sweet yorker and denied Adam Zampa a match-winning moment on the final ball to clinch a dramatic victory as Melbourne finished with 169-6.

 

STEYN GETS A TOUGH WELCOME

After starting his BBL career with a dot ball, Dale Steyn was launched for back-to-back sixes by Jake Weatherald.

The Strikers opener was not finished there either, finding the ropes twice more in succession – the second drilled to the boundary past a diving mid off.

However, Steyn got his revenge when Weatherald ballooned him to mid on to become the first wicket to fall.

WELLS' ACCELARATION KEY

The Stars appeared to have everything under control until Wells claimed the Strikers' first boundary in 34 deliveries, though there was more than a slice of luck about it as Cartwright spilled an absolute dolly off Zampa on the ropes.

That over proved to be the foundation of a surge that saw Wells claim 51 off the last 26 balls he faced, sealing a second fifty of this BBL.

He finished with a stunning 13-ball partnership worth 32 alongside Rashid Khan, a prolific spell that ended up proving key to the victory.

 

MAXWELL COMES UNDONE

After Khan had Peter Handscomb (34) stumped off a googly, Maxwell decided it was time to cut loose. He launched the next ball to Wells at wide long on and had a six when the ball slipped through the Strikers fielder's grasp.

Maxwell bludgeoned Cameron Valente into the top tier and dispatched Ashton Agar for a pair of maximums in the 16th over to bring victory into the Stars' sights.

However, his flamboyance proved his undoing and Siddle held his nerve in a tense finale to ensure the Strikers made it back-to-back victories.

Mitchell Swepson could make his Test debut in the series finale against New Zealand after being called into Australia's squad for the Sydney showdown.

Leg-spinner Swepson has been added to the squad for the third and final Test, which gets underway at the SCG on January 3.

Swepson, whose only international appearance came in a Twenty20 against England in 2018, has taken 12 wickets from six Sheffield Shield games at 26.58 this season.

The 26-year-old Queenslander could join Nathan Lyon in a two-pronged spin attack against the Black Caps – who are fighting to keep the series alive in the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne.

"Having Mitch in Sydney gives us the option to play two specialist spinners if the conditions demand," National selector Trevor Hohns said. "We will make those assessments when we get to Sydney."

Meanwhile, veteran paceman Peter Siddle has been released from the squad after Australia opted for James Pattinson to replace injured quick Josh Hazlewood at the MCG.

"Having Sids [Siddle] as the 13th man and his experience at the MCG has been invaluable," Hohns added. "His insights have greatly assisted the fast bowlers for this Test and it was great having him around the group.

"James has been with the squad through the summer, has performed well Marsh Sheffield Shield matches and is thoroughly deserving of his recall to the team."

Australia can wrap up the series in Melbourne following their 296-run rout of New Zealand in Perth.

James Pattinson is set to make his return for Australia's Boxing Day showdown against New Zealand, according to head coach Justin Langer.

Pattinson missed the Test series against Pakistan after he was suspended for the opening match in November due to a level two breach of Cricket Australia's code of conduct for abuse of an opposition player in the Sheffield Shield.

But the Victoria paceman is poised to replace injured quick Josh Hazlewood for the second Test against New Zealand at the MCG in Melbourne, despite Peter Siddle being drafted into the squad.

"I am really looking forward to seeing Patto bowl and bowl well in this Boxing Day Test, which is his home ground as well," Langer told 6PR on Saturday.

"James Pattinson was 12th man in the last game and I hope what I have shown in the last 18 months is that we have been really consistent in our selection.

"He's been unlucky, he only played a couple of Tests in the Ashes and he is so hungry like Mitchell Starc.

"The way he has come back from playing [two] Tests in the Ashes has just been brilliant."

Australia can wrap up the three-Test series following their 296-run rout of the Black Caps in Perth.

All eyes will be on the MCG pitch when Australia and trans-Tasman rivals New Zealand do battle, starting Thursday.

MCG curator Matt Page has come under fire after a Sheffield Shield match was abandoned due to an unsafe surface earlier this month.

"I know they are going to be under some pressure, there is no doubt about that," Langer said. "But I also know that Matt Page is an incredibly hard worker.

"They got it wrong in the last Shield game, but they were getting it right for the two Shield games before.

"He'll have some nervous nights Pagey, but I am confident he will get a good wicket up."

Australia have called in veteran bowler Peter Siddle to replace Josh Hazlewood for the Boxing Day Test against New Zealand.

Selectors have turned to local Victoria paceman Siddle for the Melbourne showdown after Hazlewood injured his hamstring in Perth.

Siddle is the only addition for the second Test at the MCG following Australia's 296-run rout of the Black Caps in the series opener at Perth Stadium.

The 35-year-old – a veteran of 67 Tests and 221 wickets – featured in the Ashes in England, though he has not played a home Test since November 2016.

"He is a proven Test match performer with an exceptional knowledge of the MCG which will be a valuable part of our preparation," said national selector Trevor Hohns.

 

Australia squad: David Warner, Joe Burns, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Matthew Wade, Travis Head, Tim Paine (c), Pat Cummins, Mitch Starc, Nathan Lyon, James Pattinson, Michael Neser, Peter Siddle.

Australia paceman Josh Hazlewood will miss the Boxing Day Test after injuring his hamstring in Perth, coach Justin Langer confirmed.

Scans revealed Hazlewood suffered a low-grade tear during his opening spell on the second day of the first Test against New Zealand.

The 28-year-old lasted just eight deliveries, taking the wicket of Jeet Raval, before being forced from the field.

Langer ruled him out of the MCG clash and suggested Peter Siddle could rival James Pattinson and uncapped seamer Michael Neser for Hazlewood's spot.

"Without doubt, Patto and Michael Neser, they'll be in the squad 100 per cent and we'll look whether we replace Josh with another fast bowler," Langer told reporters.

"The obvious one would be Peter Siddle, actually. He did a really good job in the Ashes, he's bowling very well for Victoria and it's at the MCG, where he's played a lot of cricket.

"We'll see what happens the rest of this game and then make a decision."

Australia will expect to take a 1-0 series advantage to Melbourne after building a 417-run lead by stumps on day three at Optus Stadium.

The hosts are set to resume at 167-6 in their second innings after skittling the Black Caps for 166 on Saturday.

Joe Root was let off the hook by Peter Siddle and Tim Paine as England made a positive start to the final Ashes Test at The Oval.

Siddle, brought back into Australia's side at the expense of Mitchell Starc, should have dismissed England's captain on 24 but put down a simple catch at deep square leg.

The Yorkshireman's wicket would have been a vital one for Australia, with the visitors having struggled to test Root, who moved to 28 not out, or Rory Burns (42 no) following Joe Denly's dismissal.

Australia captain Paine also dropped his English counterpart, failing to hold onto a diving, one-handed attempt as England made it to lunch on 86-1.

Put into bat by Paine, England's Burns and Denly accumulated 27-0 by the end of the eighth over - the highest opening partnership of the series so far.

Things would have been different if in-form Burns had not successfully reviewed Marais Erasmus' leg before wicket decision in the fourth over, though Denly (14) was dismissed five overs later when he edged Pat Cummins to Steve Smith, who held on at the second attempt.

Root swiftly got about his business, clipping Siddle for two boundaries, while Burns fended off Mitchell Marsh.

Cummins bowled Root for a golden duck at Old Trafford, and the world's number one Test bowler should have had his wicket again.

A short ball drew Root into a poor hook shot, but Siddle failed to hold on in the outfield, and Cummins was frustrated once more in his next over.

Root flashed recklessly outside off stump, only for Paine - moving across David Warner at first slip - to attempt an acrobatic catch which went down as England held firm to survive the session.

Mitchell Starc dropped out of Australia's team for the final Ashes Test, with Tim Paine's visitors making two changes.

Australia arrived at The Oval with the Ashes already secure following their 185-run victory at Old Trafford, which gave them a 2-1 series lead.

Having impressed in tour matches, Starc came into the line-up in Manchester, replacing James Pattinson.

However, the 29-year-old paceman - who scored an unbeaten 54 in the fourth Test and took four wickets - did not made the cut for the match that began in London on Thursday, with Australia selecting Peter Siddle instead.

The other change to Australia's side saw Mitchell Marsh replace Travis Head, a switch Paine had revealed in his pre-match news conference on Wednesday.

Paine won the toss on Thursday, electing to bowl first.

Australia team for final Ashes Test: David Warner, Marcus Harris, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Matthew Wade, Mitchell Marsh, Tim Paine (captain, wk), Pat Cummins, Peter Siddle, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood.

Recalled Australia opener Marcus Harris lasted only a dozen balls as Jofra Archer struck early in the third Test, but the rain returned at Headingley and forced the players off after four overs.

Showers initially postponed the toss and came back shortly after Joe Root had inserted Australia under gloomy skies in Leeds, meaning play did not start until 12:10 local time (11:10 GMT), a delay of 80 minutes.

Root's decision to try to take advantage of the day-one conditions looked wise when an out-of-sorts David Warner played and missed at a series of deliveries from his recent nemesis Stuart Broad, but it was Archer who claimed the first wicket, Harris nicking behind when on eight with the final ball of the fourth over.

Both Warner and the England players followed Harris back in, though, as the rain fell and the covers were brought on with Australia 12-1 as lunch was taken at 12:45 local time.

Harris had been restored to the XI for Cameron Bancroft in one of three changes made by Australia, with Steve Smith – missing following a bout of concussion – and Peter Siddle also replaced by Marnus Labuschagne and James Pattinson.

England, 1-0 down in the five-match series after Australia's win at Edgbaston was followed by a drawn Test at Lord's, were unchanged as opener Jason Roy was passed fit after suffering a blow to the helmet in the nets on Tuesday.

Australia opener Cameron Bancroft was dropped for Marcus Harris at Headingley while Jason Roy was declared fit for an unchanged England, who opted to field first in the third Ashes Test.

Tim Paine's team, 1-0 up in the five-match series after their victory at Edgbaston was followed by a drawn Test at Lord's, made three changes to their XI.

One was enforced as Steve Smith was ruled out on Tuesday following a bout of concussion, and Marnus Labuschagne, his replacement during the game at Lord's, came into the team from the start in Leeds.

The tourists also chose to replace opener Bancroft with Harris and bring in seamer James Pattinson – who featured at Edgbaston – for Peter Siddle.

England had concerns over Roy's availability after he suffered a blow to the helmet in the nets on Tuesday, but he was declared fine to feature following concussion tests.

The toss was put back by 40 minutes due to drizzle on a dull morning and though play was due to commence at 11:20 local time (10:20 GMT), further rain brought the covers back on and delayed the start.

Australia have left out Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood for the first Ashes Test against England, in which the tourists will bat first after winning the toss at Edgbaston.

The exclusion of Starc, the Cricket World Cup's leading wicket-taker, had been predicted in the days leading up to the series opener, but Hazlewood also missed out on selection.

Australia captain Tim Paine confirmed at the toss that James Pattinson and Peter Siddle had got the nod to partner Pat Cummins in his pace attack. Pattinson will be making his first Test appearance since February 2016 after returning from radical back surgery, while Siddle returns having impressed for Essex in the English County Championship.

Starc has struggled to produce his best form in recent red-ball action, but leaving him out still represents something of a gamble from Australia given his outstanding performances during the World Cup in England and Wales.

"It's difficult to leave them out," said Paine of Starc and Hazlewood. "They've been quality performers for a long time but they're going to play a part in the series."

As expected, Cameron Bancroft ousts Marcus Harris at the top of the order, the former returning to the Test arena along with David Warner and Steve Smith following the trio's bans for their roles in last year's ball-tampering scandal. Matthew Wade was picked to bat at six, ahead of Mitchell Marsh.

England named their team on Wednesday. The fit-again James Anderson, who turned 37 on Tuesday, has been included but there is no place for Jofra Archer.

Home skipper Root will bat at number three, having previously expressed a preference for coming in at four.

The opening day's play looked set to start on schedule at 11am local time, but afternoon showers were forecast in Birmingham.

 

England: Rory Burns, Jason Roy, Joe Root (captain), Joe Denly, Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow, Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Stuart Broad, James Anderson.

Australia: David Warner, Cameron Bancroft, Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Matthew Wade, Tim Paine (captain), James Pattinson, Pat Cummins, Peter Siddle, Nathan Lyon.

Peter Siddle has faith in Australia's well-balanced squad to cope with whatever is thrown at them during the Ashes series against England.

Tim Paine's side are aiming to become the first touring party from Down Under to triumph on English soil since 2001, though Australia are the current holders of the urn following their emphatic 4-0 triumph in 2017-18.

Siddle was also involved in the past three unsuccessful tours to England, though he believes the current crop are better placed for success in unfamiliar conditions.

"We are a lot more aware of the team set-up and the dynamics we need to win a series in England," the seamer said.

"A couple of the other series I've played in, we haven't been quite suited to the conditions and have gone about it the wrong way.

"But I think, especially with the squad that’s been picked and the players that are in and around the group, we've got a good skill set, so whatever is dished up to us wicket-wise, we will be able to cope and handle what they throw at us."

Siddle's faith stems from the number of Australian players in the 17-man squad who have experienced playing in England.

The 34-year-old acknowledges his time playing county cricket for Essex, where he has taken 34 wickets in eight first-class outings at an average of just 20.08 this year, has helped him to become a better bowler.

"I'm in a good frame of mind – the confidence that I have after the last two seasons over here playing for Essex has put me in a good position to know that I’m comfortable with my game, especially in England," Siddle said.

"I know that if I get the opportunity to play in this series, I'm more ready than ever. I'm definitely bowling a lot better than I have done in these conditions, and that's the best thing that I bring to this team now.

"I've got a pretty good record at Test cricket in Ashes games in England. But my experience over the last couple of years ...I've learned a lot. A lot of new skills and ways to go about it and I can play a big part in this series."

The first Ashes Test begins on Thursday at Edgbaston.

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