Darcie Brown hat-trick in WBBL clash between Adelaide Strikers and Brisbane Heat, Jess Jonassen saves the day

A masterful captain’s call from Brisbane Heat skipper Jess Jonassen has thwarted Darcie Brown and the Adelaide Strikers in the first completed WBBL match of a rain-ravaged weekend.

When 18-year-old Brown claimed just the sixth hat-trick in WBBL history (and the first ever for the Strikes) in the first innings, the Strikers must’ve smelled victory.

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But as the sun came out in Launceston, so too did the Heat, who, led by Jonassen, combined to end the Strikers’ unbeaten start to WBBL07 in the shortened 11-over fixture.

All four of Saturday’s games were abandoned due to wet weather and it was the Strikers’ parade that was most thoroughly rained on — the Adelaideans looked in control of their match with the Hobart Hurricanes before it was called off.

The cancellation clearly didn’t dampen the spirits of Brown, who on Sunday claimed the first WBBL hat-trick since 2019.

It continued her brilliant start to the summer, which began with call-ups to the international side for the recent series against India.

Brown (L) made her Test debut in the one-off Test against India. (Photo by Steve Bell/Getty Images)
Brown (L) made her Test debut in the one-off Test against India. (Photo by Steve Bell/Getty Images)Source: Getty Images

Georgia Voll was twice dropped on her way to an unbeaten 31 from 17 runs. Her spell at the crease was crucial as the Heat posted an impressive 104 at the innings break.

“I was just told to go out and back myself and I think I did that today,” Voll said afterwards.

“I usually like to take a few balls to get in and get going but with the shortened game, with only a few overs left, I didn’t have that time. To get out there and have a good hit-out was really good.”

It turned out that the only thing that could foil Brown’s youthful exuberance was the steady hand of Jess Jonassen.

Jonassen broke what was looking like an ominous opening partnership between openers Laura Wolvaardt and Dane Van Niekerk by sending the latter on her way. On the very next ball, Jonassen caught-and-bowled international teammate Tahlia McGrath.

The second wicket closed out her over but in a move as wise as it was selfless, Jonassen chose not to go for her hat-trick.

Given the fixture was shortened due to the delay, only one player per side was allowed to bowl three overs. Jonassen sacrificed her shot at history and allowed Georgia Prestwidge to be that bowler.

“I think JJ just thinks about the team and what we can do to get the win,” Voll said.

Jonassen had a day to remember. (Photo by Steve Bell/Getty Images)Source: Getty Images

It proved to be a masterstroke of a decision — in her third over, Prestwidge dismissed Wolvaardt on 54 runs and also sent Madeline Penna packing to all but end the Strikers’ hopes of victory.

Sarah Coyte and Amanda-Jade Wellington each hit a boundary in the final over but it was too little too late.

Jonassen may have been the hero for the Heat but Brown’s heroics will have gone a long way to ensuring her first T20I appearance against New Zealand in March this year won’t be her last.

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