James Hopes of the Heat looks dejected as he leaves the field during the Big Bash League match between the Brisbane Heat and the Perth Scorchers at The Gabba on December 18, 2012 in Brisbane, Australia.
James Hopes of the Heat looks dejected as he leaves the field during the Big Bash League match between the Brisbane Heat and the Perth Scorchers at The Gabba on December 18, 2012 in Brisbane, Australia. Matt Roberts / Getty Images

Heat's Hopes remains positive despite BBL loss to Scorchers

BRISBANE Heat captain James Hopes believes morale is still high among his teammates, despite their loss to the Scorchers in crazy circumstances on Tuesday night.

The Scorchers were set 51 to win off 30 balls in the rain-interrupted match courtesy of the Duckworth Lewis system, after the hosts smashed 4-109 off 13.1 overs.

The Perth outfit won with four balls to spare at the Gabba.

That left the Heat with just one win from its first three games, but Hopes believes his side could easily be undefeated, and that's why his troops are not dropping their heads.

"It's not like we're in a hole thinking 'how do we play better?'" he said.

"Hobart chased down 175 against us, but we thought we were in that game right up until the end, and we managed to beat the Strikers in Adelaide by scoring 186.

Hopes said Dan Christian wanted to bowl six yorkers in the penultimate over against the Scorchers, and he had the skipper's full support, before Nathan Coulter-Nile belted him for a game-deciding 21 runs.

The 34-year-old Hopes credited the Scorchers for their win, but believes they should not have been given the luxury of chasing their target from five overs with all 10 wickets at their disposal.

Hopes said his young batting teammates were excited and not nervous to take on spinning legend and the Renegades' Muttiah Muralitharan on Saturday night at Etihad Stadium.

Meanwhile, following some below-average results, Anthony Stuart was sacked as NSW coach yesterday, replaced by former Sri Lankan Test player Chandika Hathurusingha on an interim basis.


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