Hurricanes coach Julia Price has forecast a shake-up to the batting line-up after her side fell to its fifth-straight loss with a seven-wicket defeat to Sydney Thunder.
An improved performance from star West Indian import Hayley Matthews could not save the Hurricanes from another below-par batting display which saw them score less than 120 for the fourth-straight game.
Matthews’ fellow imports Veda Krishnamurthy and Lauren Winfield again struggled to make an impact at the top of the order – both scooping simple catches to fielders inside the circle – and could drop down the order for Sunday morning’s repeat fixture at UTAS Stadium.
Both players average less than 12 after five games while wicketkeeper Georgia Redmayne has struggled to recapture the form that saw her hit 278 runs at 23.16 in last year’s campaign.
“(In) the top four we’ve still got a couple of people short of runs so I think we just need to play around with a few things now,” Price said after the game.
“We’ve got a lot of people sitting around on the bench that are really keen to get a hit.
“We’ve probably got to change things around and maybe bring in a local up the order and give them a chance - they’ve been training just as hard as everybody else so why not?”
The loss of two early wickets ensured the Hurricanes made another sluggish start, and they only reached 8-112 thanks to Matthews’ anchoring knock of 39 and some late hitting from Corinne Hall and Stefanie Daffara.
Launceston’s Brooke Hepburn (2-14 off three) and Celeste Raack (0-13 off three) made a good fist of keeping it tight in the field but Thunder opener Rachael Haynes was relentless, smashing 64 off 49 to kill off any hopes of a Hurricanes win.
Haynes could have been dismissed off the first ball of the innings had the ever-electric Hall completed a spectacular diving effort at mid-off, but otherwise produced a chanceless innings until being caught on the boundary by Matthews.
The Thunder passed the total with nearly four overs to spare but Price said her side had showed improvement in the defeat.
“I was much happier with their batting plans even though they didn’t come off as well as they could, but their bowling plans have been pretty good a majority of the time.
“We’ve just got to get more runs on the board, that’s what it comes down to.”
Price also praised Matthews for her best knock of the season to date.
“I thought Hayley batted a lot better, she was a lot more mature about her innings but again we haven’t got anyone scoring a 50 yet in our team and that’s a huge thing.”
The Hurricanes will have another chance to knock off the Thunder at 11am on Sunday.