Lynn comes clean on Heat’s Big Bash crash
THE Brisbane Heat have bombed out of the Big Bash League, failing to make the finals after Aaron Finch's Melbourne Renegades crushed their title dreams.
Finch (63 not out) piloted the wooden-spooners to a thrilling seven-wicket win against the Heat at Marvel Stadium on Monday to officially end a bitter summer for Brisbane.
After entering the competition as title favourites, the Heat finished second-last and became the only team to lose twice to the last-placed Renegades, who only won three games all tournament.
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The Heat haven't made the BBL finals since 2016-17 and the franchise's fragile batting performances ultimately cost them a shot at this summer's title.
"I don't think we lost it tonight - it's our big losses throughout the tournament which hurt," Heat captain Chris Lynn said. "Everyone is pretty disappointed. I'm my own harshest critic.
"The windscreen is bigger than the rear-vision mirror. Let's try and look forward. There's more to life than cricket. The boys can't be too disappointed.
"We've just got to keep getting better."
The Heat went into the Renegades match knowing a win would send them into fourth spot and a home elimination final at the Gabba on Thursday night.
But Brisbane's 7-154 on a solid batting wicket wasn't enough as Australia's white-ball captain Finch crafted an unbeaten 63 from 49 balls to guide the Renegades to victory in the final over.
After winning the toss and batting, former Test tortoise Matt Renshaw was once again the Heat's saviour after the top order failed to deliver and left Brisbane teetering at 4-65.
Renshaw (65 from 47) and Marnus Labuschagne (28) produced a crucial 61-run partnership to give the Heat a total to bowl out.
The Heat's spinners suffocated the Renegades at 3-68 after 10 overs, but Finch and Mohammad Nabi (38 not out) showed the type of composure most of Brisbane's batsmen have lacked all tournament.
Heat all-rounder Jack Prestwidge, who scored four and didn't bowl, had a game to forget after he dropped Finch in the 18th over then spilt a ball over the boundary.
The Heat finished the tournament with a 6-8 record, having lost five of seven home games, and failed to improve on last season despite the acquisition of South African legend AB de Villiers, whose 146 runs at 24.33 in six games could be considered a failure.
Lynn was the only Heat batsmen to feature in the tournament's top 10 run-scorers, but his 387 runs at 29.76 was below a pass mark for Brisbane's highest-paid player.
The Heat's sole BBL title victory came in 2012-13 and they must find a way to play smarter cricket following a number of brainless batting collapses over the past two summers.
De Villiers said the Heat weren't far off being a competitive team and he was hoping to return for BBL10.
"I don't think we need much," he said.
"We played some really good cricket. We threw away two games. I was to blame in a way.
"We were a little bit lackadaisical with our batting. A little bit of intensity is necessary. A little bit of experience.
"I had so much fun, I wish I could have been here from the start. I enjoyed every minute of it. Let's hope (I'm back). It's a long way away but I'd love to come back.
"I had a lot of fun with the boys. They looked after me like I was one of their own."
The Hobart Hurricanes will host Sydney Thunder in an elimination final on Thursday with the winner to face the Adelaide Strikers on Saturday.
The Melbourne Stars and Sydney Sixers will battle at the MCG on Friday in what is a qualifying match for the final.