Daniel Hughes’ masterful performance against the Melbourne Stars on Boxing Day has been touted as one of the finest knocks in Big Bash League history.
But nobody was more surprised about the explosive cameo than Hughes himself.
“It would have to be one of my better innings in the BBL,” the Sixers told reporters on Sunday. “I actually didn’t know I had that in me, but turns out I do.”
Hughes single-handedly guided his side towards the unlikely one-wicket victory on the Gold Coast, his 96 off 51 balls featuring six boundaries and seven sixes.
It ranks as the highest score by a Sixers player in Big Bash history, narrowly bettering Josh Philippe’s entertaining 95 against the Melbourne Renegades earlier this month.
With 20 runs needed from the final over, Hughes struck three consecutive boundaries off Stars rival skipper Maxwell to put his side within touching distance of the 194-run target.
Stars paceman Nathan Coulter-Nile was expected to bowl the decisive over, but had been rushed off the field with a calf injury.
“To be honest, I had absolutely no idea that he wasn’t on the field,” Hughes admitted.
“I didn’t know what he’d done, I had no idea what was happening. I thought he was going to bowl the last over.
“I had no idea that he was injured. I was just concentrating on what I was trying to do.”
Daniel Hughes of the Sixers.Source:Getty Images
The stunning victory shot the defending champions into top spot on the BBL ladder, having secured three wins in their four encounters this season.
New recruits Daniel Christian, Jason Holder and Carlos Brathwaite have brought priceless batting depth to the squad’s starting XI, providing additional bowling options as well.
“It’s just the way the team is at the moment,” Hughes said. “We have so much experience in our batting order and so many good players, you just have the freedom to go out there and play the way the guys do.
“We’ve got so much confidence in everyone that puts on the Sixers shirt.
“We know each other’s game, and we always talk about playing with freedom and being fit, being fearless.
“It’s nice to see the guys backing themselves and getting the results.
“We always enjoy each other’s success, so there’s a great feeling in the group at the moment.”
The Sixers will next take on the Melbourne Renegades at Metricon Stadium on Tuesday evening.
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