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Joel Gould

Aussie stint set Dwarshuis on BBL final path for Sixers

Paceman Ben Dwarshuis celebrates his five-for that helped push the Sixers into the BBL final. (Dave Hunt/AAP PHOTOS)

After taking a career best 5-21 to lift the Sydney Sixers into the BBL final, fast bowler Ben Dwarshuis has credited a T20 international stint with Australia for his purple patch of form.

The 29-year-old had his best return in 105 BBL games for the Sixers in the 39-run qualifying final win over Brisbane Heat on the Gold Coast on Friday.

Dwarshuis played in two T20 internationals for Australia in December against India and took five wickets with his left-arm seamers.

Since returning to the BBL he has been a regular wicket taker and finished the regular season with 16 to be the competition's equal second-best.

"In India, I just think how calm the environment is in the Aussie set-up at the moment was really nice," Dwarshuis said.

"It was easy to slide in and be clear on your roles and execute. Going to India, who are the powerhouses of T20 cricket, and putting in a few good performances there a few weeks out from the BBL let me  start the tournament with plenty of confidence.

"Fortunately, I've been able to keep that form going. One more game, and hopefully it keeps going." 

The Sixers host the BBL final on Wednesday at the SCG, despite not having a single player named in the team of the tournament.

Instead of taking that as a negative, Dwarshuis said it was a reflection of the culture captain Moises Henriques and coach Greg Shipperd had built.

"We don't have anyone in the team of the tournament, but if there was a second or third team of the tournament most of our squad would be in there," Dwarshuis said.

"We are a team where everybody stands up when they need to. We don't just rely on one or two players game-in and game-out.

"Everyone has made great contributions throughout the BBL and when you get in pressure moments that's a really important thing to have in your team. It's a great trait and one of the reasons why the Sixers have been so successful the last few years."

The Sixers have played in six BBL finals and won three in their history. The current side is a real band of brothers who have stuck together through what has been a mostly wonderful time for the franchise.

"I look at the team now and there are probably six or seven who have played 100 games with the Sixers," Dwarshuis said.

"We have this core group who like to stick together and play great cricket together. We know each other's roles and are comfortable with each other. 

"I've won two finals and lost two. I love it here at the Sixers. Hopefully, we can make it three wins.

"Our win in Perth (to secure second spot on the regular season ladder) and this win here shows we are peaking at the right time in the tournament. There are some positive signs leading into Sydney.

"The home ground advantage is a saying for a reason. We have played four of our games there this year and know what to expect.'

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