Brisbane captain Peter Forrest unleashed the fireworks but it was all in vain as the Heat slumped to a 10-run Twenty20 Big Bash loss to Perth Scorchers at the WACA Ground on Thursday night.
Set 163 for victory, the Heat left their run too late to finish at 6 for 152, despite the best efforts of Forrest (59 off 42 balls) and opener Matthew Hayden (33 off 26).
Brisbane’s third loss on the trot left them two games outside of the top four and in grave danger of missing the finals.
Perth surged into the top four following its second straight win, and will look to strengthen its finals credentials when it takes on Shane Warne’s Melbourne Stars at the MCG next Wednesday.
“I suppose we were in a good position with only two wickets down after 10 overs, but we just left it too late,” Forrest said.
“At the moment we’re not playing anywhere near our best and we’re only just losing.
“I’m sure once we start playing to our potential we’ll win easy. We definitely haven’t written ourselves off in this competition.”
Herschelle Gibbs praised the tight bowling performance from the Scorchers’ attack.
“I think we were 20 runs short but the lads did well enough with the ball to restrict them,” Gibbs said.
Former Test spinner Brad Hogg snared the key scalp of Hayden to finish with figures of 1 for 26 off four overs, while paceman Ben Edmondson returned 2 for 33 in front of a sell-out crowd of 15,454.
Forrest struck three fours and four sixes in his impressive knock, helping revive the Heat’s victory chances after the visitors meandered to 2 for 64 after 10 overs.
But the contest swung well and truly Perth’s way when Forrest was bowled by Edmondson in the 17th over, leaving the Heat requiring 41 off the final 20 deliveries.
The equation came down to 22 off the last over, but specialist death paceman Nathan Rimmington was able to keep Chris Hartley and Michael Neser at bay.
Earlier, Marcus North (40 off 29) and Gibbs (38 off 22) combined for a blistering 80-run opening stand to guide the Perth Scorchers to a competitive 8 for 162.
Mitch Marsh chipped in with 33 off 21, but was left nursing a sore groin after being struck in the worst possible area by a 140km/h Michael Neser full toss.
Test paceman Ryan Harris returned figures of 1 for 35 off four overs, while Test hopeful Dan Christian snared 2 for 27 off four.
Spinner Nathan Hauritz was the most economical with 1 for 16 off three.
Perth surged into the top four following its second straight win, and will look to strengthen its finals credentials when it takes on Shane Warne’s Melbourne Stars at the MCG next Wednesday