Healy goes berserk with bat as hubby Starc fetches big bucks

Alyssa Healy produced a whirlwind century at Hurstville Oval on Saturday to help the Sydney Sixers down the Adelaide Strikers by seven wickets and ensure they would finish in the top two of this year's women's Big Bash.

On the same day her husband Mitchell Starc was bought by the Mumbai Indians for almost $A1.9 million in the Indian Premier League auction, Healy smashed 106 off 66 balls in front of 996 fans, moving Sydney back to the top of the WBBL standings.

The Sixers wicketkeeper started cautiously in pursuit of the Strikers' 5-149, scoring 25 off her first 25 balls, before exploding to life. She reached her half-century off 34 balls and brought up her ton in just 60 to a standing ovation at the suburban ground before falling to Australian leg spinner Amanda-Jade Wellington, who had her stumped late on.

"Everyone's been telling me all year to give myself some time to get into my innings and in the 13th game it finally paid off," Healy said.

"We started off a little bit slow but we knew that we've got such potency in our batting line-up that we could always catch up.

"They've got a really good new-ball attack. I'm sort of Schutter's [Megan Schutt's] bunny so I was watchful to her early and then waited for something that was in my zone that I could try and hit."

Erin Burns (25 not out) saw out the remaining task before Sara McGlashan hit the winning runs in the final oval.

All corners of Hurstville Oval were peppered by 27-year-old Healy at the peak of her powers as she cracked three sixes and 13 boundaries to score the Sixers' second century of the season.

Teammate Ashleigh Gardner achieved the feat in the first game of the season, needing only 47 balls to reach the milestone.

Healy's blistering performance after an inconsistent season with the bat was a timely reminder to the rest of the WBBL that this Sixers' batting line-up had several dangerous strings to its bow.

She put on 34 with opening partner Ellyse Perry before the superstar departed for a rare failure, bowled for 10 while trying to slog-sweep Australian teammate Schutt.

Earlier, Sixers recruit Sarah Coyte bowled superbly against her old team in her much-publicised return from protracted battles with anorexia and anxiety which led her to retire from the sport last year.

Coyte was introduced in the seventh over with the unenviable task of bowling to New Zealand power hitters Sophie Devine and Suzie Bates and finished with 2-14 as the game's most productive bowler.

"She's been training the last two weeks and I think the first session back I faced her first in the nets and she put them exactly on the spot that I remember her doing for Australia for so long," Healy said.

"She'll be a great addition for us, she's going to get more and more confident as the games go on. Hopefully we can just bring her into a really nice environment, make her feel comfortable and hopefully enjoy her cricket again."

The Sixers are now a win clear of the third-placed Strikers with a far superior run rate before Sunday's final regular-season match against Adelaide at the same venue.

Their thumping win over the Strikers moved them past the cross-town Thunder, who slipped back to second after falling by six wickets to the Brisbane Heat.

Rachael Haynes (43) and Alex Blackwell (41) helped the Thunder to 5-145 batting first, but Grace Harris (57) and Delissa Kimmince (42) put on 83 runs for the third wicket, ensuring Brisbane chased the total down in the 19th over.

This story Healy goes berserk with bat as hubby Starc fetches big bucks first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.