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Sydney Smash key to WBBL Finals hopes

10 January 2017

Rachael Haynes // GETTY IMAGES

It’s one of the biggest matches on the Sydney Thunder calendar, the Sydney Smash.

This weekend the Thunder and Sixers will do battle in a double-header at the Sydney Cricket Ground, and for the WBBL side the game means more than just the local rivalry.

“In the broader context of our season this match means a lot to us,” said Thunder opening batter Rachael Haynes.

“From a fan’s perspective, they’ll no doubt want to see us square the ledger.

“From our point of view we need to win regardless of the opposition to stay on track for Finals.”

Haynes has passed 25 four times from her 9 knocks for the Thunder in WBBL06, and is scoring quickly with a strike rate of 110.90.

The Thunder opener is confident a big score is on the horizon.

“I’m hitting the ball really well,” said Haynes.

“I’ve probably just missed out on having that big innings but I think that will come.

“Cricket can be a little bit unforgiving, sometimes you’re playing well and then the next minute you’re out.

“I don’t want to put any additional pressure on myself, but this weekend we’re playing on a really good ground at the SCG and I think there will be plenty of runs out there and I’ll be looking to cash in.”

The Thunder have four games left to push for a spot in the WBBL Finals, with all four being played at away grounds.

Haynes believes the squad is up to the challenge of winning on the road.

“I think it is good for us to get away to be honest,” said Haynes.

“Sometimes when you’re on the road it is a great opportunity to bond as a team and have a bit of fun.

“Despite the fact that it is a really busy period for the squad I think there’s lots of positives.

“It’ll be good to get out and travel and play some good cricket.”


Thunder WBBL remaining games:

v Sydney Sixers – Sydney Cricket Ground (Jan 14, 6:10pm)

v Hobart Hurricanes – Blundstone Arena (Jan 16, 6:30pm)

v Perth Scorchers – Lilac Hill (Jan 20, 2:00pm)

v Perth Scorchers – Lilac Hill (Jan 21, 2:00pm)