Wednesday offers a BBL double-header with the Sydney Sixers taking on the Brisbane Heat from 6:05pm AEDT at the SCG followed by the Melbourne Renegades hosting the Hobart Hurricanes at Marvel Stadium from 7:15pm AEDT.
LAST GAME LEARNINGS
It was all about the Dans for the Sydney Sixers in their Boxing Day Sydney Smash win over the Sydney Thunder with Dan Hughes (BAT $10,700) sparking a return to form with his half-century. Hughes produced a DS score of 105 leaving the 34% ownership base that grabbed him happy.
Dan Christian (BAT|BWL $15,300) has found a better role with injuries opening up more responsibility for him and he delivered with a swashbuckling batting innings helping him to a DS score of 64.5 after 106 in the previous slate, meaning he has 63.2 form up on his 38.6 average.
For the Brisbane Heat, Chris Lynn (BAT $18,200) also marked a return to form after a sluggish start to the season, banging 57 runs from 34 balls against the Melbourne Stars, equating to 105.5 DS points much to the delight of the 36% owners who’d spent big on him. The question is can he be trusted given the price tag?
Heat import Ben Duckett (BAT $16,200) has put together two excellent games with DS scores of 101.5 and 151 and looms large in the high part of the mid-price range. He’s dropped into a batting role at four to take on the middle overs and spinners which suits him nicely.
The Melbourne Renegades have endured two tough slates against the ladder-leading Perth Scorchers, with all-rounder Will Sutherland (BOW|BAT $10,000) and opener Aaron Finch (BAT $17,000) letting down their 48% and 42% ownership bases with scores of 2 and 8 in the last slate. Sutherland may lose his spot in the side and Finch is battling injury now.
Ben McDermott (BAT $17,800) was the story for the Hobart Hurricanes in their win over the Adelaide Strikers with a blistering century, marking some blistering form. McDermott, who famously made a breakthrough century at Marvel Stadium where he plays on Wednesday night, has scored 225 and 111.8 DS points in the past two slates. He had 50% ownership last slate and would be risky to fade.
Hurricanes spinner Sandeep Lamichhane (BWL $12,800) had 38% ownership but scored 0 DS points and he’s left owners frustrated, while Riley Meredith’s (BWL $15,900) return from injury has been impressive with 69 DS points last slate. Canes opening bat Matthew Wade (BAT $20,600) continues to be volatile too after scoring 6 DS points last slate.
McDermott, who famously made a breakthrough century at Marvel Stadium where he plays on Wednesday night, has scored 225 and 111.8 DS points in the past two slates.
Veteran spinner Steve O’Keefe remains sidelined with a calf injury meaning Sixers’ Pakistani import Shadab Khan (BWL) is set to debut. He took 4-26 against Australia at last month’s T20 World Cup and is capable with the bat, thus looms as a value pick. Shadab has come into the Sixers squad with Chris Jordan having finished up his five-game stint, so do not consider him.
The Heat will be without Australian trio Mitch Swepson (BWL $14,700), Michael Neser (BWL $13,900) and Marnus Labuschagne (BAT $20,500) despite the Boxing Day Test finishing up on Tuesday as they’ve not been released. Xavier Bartlett (BWL $14,100) could into contention to return to the XI as a result given Liam Guthrie’s (BWL $13,200) struggles with the ball against the Melbourne Stars, having conceded 2-70.
There’s a lot of uncertainty about Renegades top-order batsman Finch’s (BAT $17,000) fitness after limping around the field in Sunday’s loss to the Perth Scorchers. Finch had missed the first three games of the season with a knee issue and appeared ginger but there’s been no official word and he’s named in the Gades’ 15-man squad. James Seymour (BAT $8,800) has been selected as likely cover.
Gun fast bowler Kane Richardson (BOW $17,700) is back in the Gades squad after illness kept him out last game. Shaun Marsh (BAT $17,600) isn’t ready to return from a calf injury yet but is getting closer.
Hobart will also be without Scott Boland (BOW $15,800) after his Boxing Day Test heroics, having not been released, while left-arm quick Joel Paris (BOW $14,000) is out with a hamstring injury, meaning Tom Rogers (BOW $14,800) and Jordan Thompson (BOW $11,200) should be among their attack.
Sixers spinner Lloyd Pope (BOW $9,900) seems to have some job security with O’Keefe, Ben Manenti and Jordan unavailable and he took 2-33 last slate, representing 40 DS points which is decent at that price. He was only owned by 24% on Boxing Day.
Sixers all-rounder Hayden Kerr (BOW $14,300) seems a dependable mid-ranger too, with an enhanced role and job security with other absentees plus a season average of 48.7 DS points. Hughes (BAT $10,700) is the other value option from the Sixers, although maybe his 105 DS points last slate was an aberration.
Heat batsman Tom Cooper (BAT $10,600) drew 37% ownership on Monday but didn’t deliver, however he has been elevated to first drop which is an enticing role at that price. Look out for Heat spinner Matt Kuhnemann (BOW $12,200) after four wickets in their past two games.
Tom Rogers has been a revelation with Scott Boland and Joel Paris out. Riley Meredith is also still generously priced among the Canes quicks but Marvel Stadium has been a batsmen’s track so far.
There isn’t a heap of bargain basement value in the Gades-Canes slate but you know Jake Fraser-McGurk (BAT $8,800) will play, even if his ceiling feels low. Canes import Thompson (BOW $11,200) may be worth a gamble given his all-round capabilities.
Rogers (BOW $14,800) has been a revelation with Boland and Paris out. Meredith (BOW $15,900) is also still generously priced among the Canes quicks but Marvel Stadium has been a batsmen’s track so far.
Besides for one poor score, Sixers paceman Sean Abbott (BOW $18,600) has been dependable this season with DS scores of 50, 131.5, -1 and 116 this season. His death overs role is ideal for DS points and he was appropriately owned by 43% on Boxing Day. Abbott’s ceiling is high and he offers more reliability than some of the batting premiums on offer.
Heat quick Mark Steketee (BOW $17,000) is another option with a fantastic bowling role, taking overs in the power play, power surge and at the death. This may impact his economy rate but wickets often fall during these periods at batsmen take more risks. Steketee, fresh from an Australia A call-up, has bene uber consistent this season with a DS low-high of 82-102.
McDermott (BAT $17,800) looks essential in the Gades-Canes’ slate after an exceptional run of form with the bat, having missed a few early games with a groin injury. McDermott’s DS average is 105.5 this season and his ceiling is massive after scoring 225 DS points, yet he’s still under-priced in comparison to premo team-mates.
Indeed, we’ll continue on the Gades-Canes slate initially on those premium team-mates with D’Arcy Short (BAT|BOW $21,300) worth fading as he continues to be out of touch with the bat. He’s not scored low this season but he’s also not firing for the price tag and showing no signs of turning that around, despite occupying the crease.
The aforementioned Wade (BAT $20,600) has been highly volatile too, with three DS scores below 15 and one DS score above 150, thus McDermott is the pick among that trio.
Josh Philippe (BAT $20,200) started the season with all guns blazing, including a run of DS scores of 170.5, 15, 106 and 182.5, which has seen his price sky-rocket. More recently, the Sixers wicketkeeper-bat has had scores of 35 and 28.3. He’ll turn around his form soon but that may be a risk not worth taking in this slate at that price.
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