Tilpa Bushies win T20 grand final in dramatic finish

The Tilpa Bushies and Whackers teams before their Twenty20 grand final game at Ward Oval on Friday night. Tilpa Bushies
eventually claimed the 2023 competition title in a dramatic finish when they snatched an unlikely victory in the final over. See Page 22 for a full match report. ▪ Photo contributed

Tilpa Bushies won the Twenty20 cricket grand final on Friday night in a dramatic fashion against the heavily favoured Whackers team.

The low-scoring match went down to the final wicket and second last ball of the match, with Tilpa Bushies unexpectedly coming out on top.

Whackers had won the toss and elected to bat first.

The Tilpa Bushies’ bowling unit did their job well restricting Whackers to only 64 runs.

Despite having an easy target to chase, Tilpa Bushies then struggled under the grand final pressure and Whackers’ strong bowling line-up.

The Whackers’ batting order failed to get going, with only Tristan Everett (20 runs) making any significant contribution to their final total.

The Tilpa Bushies’ bowlers were exceptional.

Robert Childs took three wickets and conceded just eight runs, Nabeel Rashid (3 wickets for 12 runs) and Bryan Manns (1 wicket for 19 runs) all contributed to restrict the Whackers to such a low total.

Tilpa Bushies’ batting order didn’t have the easiest of times chasing a small target.

For what should have been a relatively easy run chase, only Robert Childs (19 runs) and Nabeel Rashid (12 runs) made it into double figures.

Whackers’ bowlers put on a solid display, with Thomas Plater (2 wickets for 16 runs), Edward Paul (2 wickets for 12 runs) and Tristan Everett (1 wicket for 6 runs) all performing well.

In a thrilling end to the match, Tilpa Bushies found themselves needing nine runs off the last over with only two wickets in hand, as the Whackers turned to Paddy Harris to close out the game.

Harris’ first ball of the over was a no ball and went for a single.

His next two deliveries were wides, adding further pressure to the already-tense situation.

With still six balls left in the over, the Bushies now needed just five runs to win.

Harris found his mark with the fourth ball, getting the wicket of Bryan Manns and leaving the Bushies needing five runs off five balls to win. The Whackers only needed one more wicket to seal the victory.

The last man in for Tilpa Bushies, Adam Buckman, came to the crease and smashed a crucial four on his first ball, to level the scores.

The excitement was far from over, as Buckman was nearly bowled out on the next delivery.

With just one run needed off the last two balls, Harris unfortunately bowled a no ball, gifting the title to Tilpa Bushies in what was a remarkable finish to the Twenty20 season.—contributed