Australian side Sydney Thunder have set an unwanted record. Playing in the Big Bash League (BBL) against the Adelaide Strikers, they were dismissed for just 15, the lowest score in the history of men’s T20 cricket.
In addition, their innings was the shortest in the history of the format and took less than six overs to complete.
It was a dismal evening for the Thunders in front of their home crowd in Sydney. They had won the toss and invited the Strikers to bat first, with the visitors making 139/9 from their 20 overs, Chris Lynn top scoring for them with 36.
That appeared a very reachable total, but, in the end, it proved far beyond the capabilities of the Thunder batters, none of whom covered themselves in glory.
But the home team were bowled out in just 35 balls, with their top scorer being the number 10 batter Brendan Doggett who made four, bringing up the only boundary of the innings with an inside edge.
Five of the home side were out for ducks, including Alex Hales, who just a month ago, was lifting the T20 World Cup with England.
It was a night to remember though for Adelaide pace bowler Henry Thornton who took 5-3 in just 17 balls, whilst fellow pacer Wes Agar claimed 4 – 6. Thornton finished with an economy rate of 1.06 from three overs – the most efficient spell, statistically in the history of the BBL.
Matt Short took the other wicket, although he was comparatively expensive, conceding five runs in the one over he bowled.
What they said
26 year old Thornton, who, prior to this season, had only played in eight BBL matches, described himself as still in shock after what happened, modestly saying that he tried to bowl his best ball and was lucky on the day.
Jason Sangha, the Thunder captain had no excuses for his team’s performance bluntly stating “it’s just not good enough for a professional team to be bowled out for that little.”
The Big Bash League
The Big Bash League, which is now in its 12th season, has just started, and this was the second game of the campaign for both teams.
The Thunder actually won their first game, beating the Melbourne Stars by one wicket, whilst the Adelaide Strikers are the early BBL leaders, having also beaten the other Sydney side, the Sixers.
Both teams have won the competition once in their history, the Thunder lifting the trophy in 2015 – 2016, and the Strikers two years after that.
In terms of lowest scores, the previous record was the 57 in less than 13 overs that the Melbourne Renegades playing against the Melbourne Stars in January 2015.
The Renegades also held the previous record for the shortest innings, It took them less than 11 overs to be bowled out for 60 when facing the Sydney Sixers in Hobart two years ago.
The Renegades, at least, will be glad that their place in the record books has been supplanted.
The Thunders’ previous worst score was 94 all out, recorded against the Hobart Hurricanes in January 2014.
Lowest previous T20 score
Prior to this match, the lowest T20 score was 21 all out in 6 overs and three balls against the Czech Republic in August 2019.
In terms of full ICC members, it is the Netherlands who currently hold the record, being dismissed for 39 against Sri Lanka in Chattogram in 2014, and for 44 against the same opponents in the 2021 World Cup in Sharjah.
In terms of the Indian t20 league, the lowest score yet recorded was the 49 that the Royal Challengers Bangalore managed against the Kolkata Knight Riders at Eden Gardens in Kolkata in April 2017.
Best bowling in T20 cricket
Despite Thornton’s great effort with the ball, he missed out in claiming the best bowling figures in T20 cricket history. That remains the preserve of Peter Aho, a Nigerian pace bowler, who took 6 – 5 whilst playing for his country against Sierra Leone in October 2021 in Lagos.
Two players claimed figures of 6 – 7: Deepak Chahar whilst playing for India against Bangladesh at Nagpur in 2019 and Uganda’s Dinesh Nakrani, achieved against Lesotho in Kigali, in the same month last year.
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