Fawad Ahmed spun Sydney Thunder to a 21-run victory over the Sixers, but only after Tom Curran and Sean Abbott fell just short of pulling off a spectacular win.
Ahmed claimed 3-33 in the rout as the Sixers managed just 9-148 in pursuit of the Thunder's 9-169.
The leg-spinner bowled both Jordan Silk and Daniel Hughes in his first over, the latter with a straighter one that completely deceived the left-hander.
However, it was then that Curran (62 from 40) and Abbott (35 off 28) united for an 88-run stand, which saw the Sixers go from needing 114 from 11 overs to a gettable 33 from the final two overs.
Abbott's knock included a booming six hit over the roof and out of the stadium off Ahmed, while Curran was backing up his 3-24 with the ball.
It came after Jos Buttler had provided the earlier highlights for the Thunder with a free-flowing 63, before an embarrassing same-end mix-up between Joe Root and Callum Ferguson headlined a collapse.
The pair both ended up at the strikers' end when the England captain attempted a run following a fumble from wicketkeeper Josh Phillipe.
Root then failed to make use of his reprieve, clean bowled by a Stephen O'Keefe (2-27) arm ball on seven.
Meanwhile Buttler's knock came off just 37 balls and included six boundaries and three maximums, including a massive pull shot off young leg-spinner Lloyd Pope which sailed well into the crowd over mid-wicket.
Former Sixer Daniel Sams also whacked 28 from 11 balls, before he was sent packing by a one-handed Phillipe screamer.