England one-day captain Eoin Morgan hit the final ball for six to give Sydney Thunder a six-wicket victory over Melbourne Stars in the Big Bash. Needing five to win, Morgan, 30, launched Ben Hilfenhaus down the ground as Thunder chased down Stars’ 166-8. It was Morgan’s final act before joining England in India for the one-day international series this month.
His knock of 71 off 50 balls keeps the defending champions’ hopes alive after their first win of this year’s event. Former England international Kevin Pietersen earlier hit 60 off 37 balls before his dismissal sparked a late collapse for the Stars.
The hosts slipped to 85-4 in response before Morgan combined with Australia international Pat Cummins in a partnership of 83 to see his side home with no further loss.
Thunder beat Stars in last season’s final, but have struggled so far this year, losing their first four games. England take on India in a three-match ODI series starting in Pune on 15 January, with a three-match T20 series to follow.