The Perth Scorchers will face the Adelaide Strikers in the Women’s Big Bash League grand final on Saturday at Optus Stadium but no matter the result, a first time winner will be crowned.
The Strikers will fly into Perth on Friday afternoon after defeating the Melbourne Renegades by nine wickets in Thursday’s Challenger final, making light work of Melbourne’s measly 8-83 total.
Perth and Adelaide have met twice this season, the Scorchers winning both matches, including a thrilling super over victory at Lilac Hill where Sophie Devine thundered two sixes to secure victory.
Boasting the likes of Tahlia McGrath, Megan Schutt and Amanda-Jade Wellington, the Strikers finished the season fourth but disposed of two time champions Brisbane Heat in the Eliminator final before decimating the Renegades a day later.
But Perth possess the all-important home ground advantage, a furnace of fans WA born Scorchers Chloe Piparo and Heather Graham intend to exploit.
“I think there will be a fair few Piparo’s in the crowd,” Bunbury born Piparo said.
“We’ve got the luxury of being able to be at home in our own beds this week, preparing in Perth conditions.
Graham added: “Being able to play a final in WA is a massive thing for us.”
Queensland bowling sensation Lilly Mills has even lured her mum and sister across the country ahead of Saturday’s final.
“Having the Perth locals here, they’re great supporters of the Perth locals and whether family are coming or not, everyone player one to 15 is going to be supported,” Mills said.
After getting the chance to showcase her power hitting when openers Sophie Devine and Beth Mooney fell early in Perth’s final two matches, Graham hopes an in-form middle order could be the final puzzle piece in the Scorchers title hunt.
“I’ve brought it from the pre-season down in Tasmania. We did a bit of power hitting stuff,” Graham said.
“I don’t think there’s a score we can’t chase down. We’ve got the fire power at the top of the order but we’ve shown in the past couple games now, if they don’t pay off, then we’ve got a middle order who can do it as well.”
Around 17,000 tickets have been sold to the Optus Stadium decider.