Senior Australian pacer Michael Neser picked up the first hat-trick of the Big Bash League (BBL) 2022/23 season.
After being released from Australia’s Test squad, Michael Neser, bowling in his first BBL game of the season for Brisbane Heat, blew the top-order of Melbourne Renegades on Wednesday in what eventually became a low-scoring thriller at the Simonds Stadium in Geelong.
Defending a par total of 137, the Heat needed a good start with the bat, and Neser provided a blockbuster one by picking up 4 wickets in his first two overs in the powerplay. His four-for in the powerplay included a hat-trick spread across two overs.
Neser started the show with the wicket of Sam Harper on the first ball itself, Harper flicking to square leg fielder. On the last ball of the over, Neser had Jake Fraser McGurk, edging to the wicketkeeeper.
On the second ball of his second over, Neser had Nic Maddinson chopping on. For his hat-trick delivery, to Jon Wells, Neser bowled an inswinger then seamed in from length and Wells had a brainfade moment as he shouldered arms thinking it was an outswinger, the ball hit the top of off-stump to give Neser a terrific hat-trick.
Neser’s hat-trick, though, was nullifed later by Andre Russell, who smashed 57 runs off 42 balls, and helped by Aaron Finch’s 31 and Akeal Hossain’s 30, Melbourne chased the target down with only 4 balls left.
Here are some of the interesting and lesser-known facts about BBL 2022 hat-trick take Michael Neser:
Neser was actually born in Pretoria, South Africa in 1990. He moved with his family to Australia at the age of 10, and quickly got into Queensland’s Under-19 side in 2008-09.
Known to move the ball both ways, Neser made his Queensland state debut in 2010/11 in the Sheffield Shield and Ryobi Cup.
Being a pacer, Neser had to deal with his share of injuries, but that didn’t stop him from becoming a regular in the starting XI of Queensland whenever he was fit.
Neser enjoyed a strong 2013-14 in the shorter formats, snapping 10 BBL wickets for Adelaide Strikers at an average of 19. He was also Queensland’s top Ryobi Cup wicket taker with 10 scalps at 27.
The good works in domestic circuit got him a call-up to Australia A squad to take on South Africa A in four-day matches in August 2014. He also played in the 2016 Australia A series against India and South Africa A.
Neser then had a bumper 2017/18 season where he helped Queensland to 2017-18 Shield title and Adelaide Strikers to BBL trophy. The pacer was rewarded with an national call-up for the 2018 ODI tour of England and made his ODI debut at The Oval.
After 2019, Neser has been a regular member of the Test squad but had to spend most of the time on the bench due to the presence of the trio of Cummins, Starc and Hazlewood.
Hence, Neser has featured in only 2 Tests so far, spread a year apart: he made his debut in December 2021 in the home Ashes; his next Test came a year, two weeks ago vs West Indies. Both his Tests have been in Adelaide. He’s picked 7 wickets in 2 Tests. Now Scott Bolands seems to have gotten ahead of Neser in the pecking order.
The 32-year-old has been a workhoarse in domestic cricket: In 88 first-class matches, Neser has snapped up 312 wickets at 23 with 13 four-fors and 9 five-fors.