sport

Hurricanes too hot for Heat

England batsman Owais Shah helped the Hobart Hurricanes to an eight-wicket win over Brisbane Heat in their opening 2012/13 Big Bash clash at the Gabba.

Shah shared a unbroken stand of 95 with man-of-the-match Travis Birt in just 8.4 overs as the visitors got home with an over to spare.

The Heat, who started last season with four consecutive losses, had posted 172-6 in their 20 overs.

Dan Christian (49 off 34 balls) top scored for the hosts while Sri Lanka's Thisara Perera delighted the rather below-par crowd of 14,057 at the Gabba with consecutive "ramp" shots for six and four.

Earlier Doug Bollinger had started the game with a huge wide beating first slip, recalling Steve Harmison's "Shoddyline" opening delivery of the 2006-07 Ashes, while Scott Styris' first ball was a head high beamer sparking Peter Forrest into evasive action.

Hurricane openers Tim Paine (29) and Jonathan Wells (39) put on 50 for the opening wicket in 5.4 overs before Birt (57 not out off 40) and Shah (36 off 23 with two sixes) took over.

There was a big moment of controversy when Birt, on 40, appeared to be caught by Heat 'keeper Chris Hartley.

It appeared the forward-diving Hartley had got his gloves under the ball but the video umpire couldn't be certain and gave not out.