No fear for Renegades in WBBL finals

Renegade Lea Tahuhu says her side relish their underdog status against the Heat for the WBBL final.
Renegade Lea Tahuhu says her side relish their underdog status against the Heat for the WBBL final.

For as long as Lea Tahuhu can remember, the Melbourne Renegades have been battling the odds in the WBBL.

A conscious decision to load the team up with young players in the first years of the competition made for some tough summers but for the second year running the Renegades are preparing for the competition's finals weekend.

Three straight wins allowed the Renegades to sneak into fourth spot and set up a semi-final clash with reigning champions Brisbane Heat at Allan Border Field on Saturday.

Far from being overawed with taking on the top-ranked Heat on their own patch, New Zealand international Tahuhu believes it's a tailor-made situation for her team.

"It's probably the Renegades' mentality anyway," the 29-year-old fast bowler told AAP.

"We seem to always be the underdogs and we take a lot of games to the last over or the last ball. We sort of feel like we've never got anything to lose.

"That's certainly the case going into the weekend. Obviously the Brisbane Heat are playing at home, they're the top qualifiers and reigning champions so there's a lot of pressure on them and expectation on them.

"We can fly under the radar a little bit and go about our business."

The Renegades have had to make do without the experience of Tahuhu's wife and fellow White Fern Amy Satterthwaite due to her being pregnant with the couple's first child.

But Tahuhu, who has been with the Renegades since the second year of the WBBL, believes the deliberate focus on youth with the franchise is starting to pay off.

"Those young players such as your Sophie Molineuxs and Georgia Warehams are now Australian players and someone like a Molly Strano as well has had that taste of international level cricket," Tahuhu said.

"That ploy by the Renegades staff has certainly paid off when you add in some old experienced international players that can come in and sort of help guide those young ones a little bit.

"That's sort of been our job and we're reaping the rewards this year."

Australian Associated Press