Broom blazes as Otago Volts cool off Scorchers
Neil Broom has produced one of the more remarkable innings in Otago's cricketing history as he led the Volts to a Champions League twenty20 win over Australian side the Perth Scorchers in Jaipur, India.
Opening the batting, Broom produced an astonishing unbeaten 117 from only 56 balls, playing the lead role in getting his team to a whopping 242-4 from their 20 overs.
The Volts lost the toss and initially looked a little uncomfortable in being asked to set a target after winning all three games in the qualifying tournament batting second.
The positive intent from the Volts was obvious but the execution in the first five overs didn't match the intent.
The boundary or nothing approach resulted in too many dot balls when they didn't get it right and after five overs they sat in a sorry state at just 22 for two.
At one stage they were 9-2 when Joel Paris, in his debut twenty20 game, picked up Hamish Rutherford and dangerman Brendon McCullum in the first two balls he bowled. McCullum lasted only one ball after being hit on the full in front of middle.
It made the Volts end result of 242 even more remarkable as Broom, Derek de Boorder and Ryan ten Doeschate delivered a master-class in hitting.
Batting at four, de Boorder had a scratchy start taking eight balls to get off the mark but he got into his work and his 45 from 28 balls provided his team with momentum.
However, de Boorder's knock was just the entrée in this run feast.
When he departed in the 10th over with the score at 76, Broom and ten Doeschate then treated all watching with one of the best hitting shows you will see.
The pair put on 128 from just 48 balls for the fourth wicket with ten Doeschate, in a 26-ball stay, racking up 66, which included six sixes and three fours.
When ten Doeschate went caught at mid wicket trying to pull a full toss, there was still 13 balls remaining in the Volts innings and Broom ensured they didn't go to waste.
He hit his way to and then well past 100 in the last two overs as he and Jimmy Neesham put on a further 38 runs off the last 13 balls.
Broom finished his innings with eight sixes and nine fours in a display which will have his name on the lips of the millions of cricket followers in India.
While ten Doeschate himself was a star he handed all the praise the way of centurion Broom.
"That was incredible hitting, Broomy's always threatened to play an innings like that. We started slowly but his hitting was unbelievable. It was just fantastic to be out there with him and making sure he was taking deep breathes, it was really hot out there, so just coaching him through those last 10 overs," ten Doeschate said.
Ten Doeschate suggested there might be a reason why his team mate had hit such good form of late - that being laser surgery on Broom's eyes.
"He's had laser surgery and it seems to have worked a treat. He's playing the short ball well again and he's got his confidence back. The knocks he's had in Sri Lanka and now the first part of this tournament is showing good results for the surgery he's had done," ten Doeschate said.
The pitch was a belter for batting but even on a road 242 was always going to prove too steep for the Perth team.
On a normal day Perth's 180 for six would be good enough but the reality was this time around they were still 63 runs short of victory.
The win means the Volts have won a remarkable 14 games in a row in twenty20 cricket and now eye their third Champions League group game against South African team the Lions on Sunday night (NZ time).
A win in that game would probably set them up for a place in the semifinals.
Otago Volts 242-4 (Neil Broom 117*, Ryan ten Doeschate 66, Derek de Boorder 45; Joel Paris 4-1-50-2, Jason Behrendorff 4-0-43-1, Adam Voges 2-0-36-1) Perth Scorchers 180-6 (Hilton Cartwright 73*, Adam Voges 36, Tom Triffitt 25, Ashton Turner 23; Ian Butler 4-0-47-3, James McMillan 3-0-19-1)
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