Pietersen and Wright star but Adelaide strike

Kevin Pietersen hit 66 and Luke Wright 45 for Melbourne Stars but it was in vain as Tim Ludeman’s 44-ball 92 not out led Adelaide Strikers to an emphatic win in the first game of this winter’s Big Bash League.

Pietersen, making his Big Bash bow, and Wright, among eight England players past and present set to play in this tournament, shared 57 for the second wicket but they were the only two of their team to make double-figures at the Adelaide Oval.

Sussex’s Wright, who dominated an opening stand of 26 with Cameron White, scored seven fours in his knock whereas Pietersen, who played for Surrey in this year’s NatWest T20 Blast, dealt mainly in sixes, four times clearing the rope, while otherwise anchoring the innings.

But Melbourne’s 148 for seven looked feeble as Ludeman stormed to a fifty in just 18 deliveries, going on to flay five maximums and nine fours in an eight-wicket triumph completed with more than seven overs to spare.

Melbourne Stars' Kevin Pietersen innovates during his 66 that featured four maximums and two fours on his Big Bash League debut

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