A win is desperately needed for both these sides who are sitting just one win in front of the bottom placed Tasmania, the CA XI’s last win was against South Australia in their tournament opener.
The Bushrangers tripped up and stumbled against a Queensland Bulls outfit who were quite vulnerable coming into the match after comprehensively being defeated by the Redbacks in their previous game. After a strong performance with the bat against the Tigers, Cameron White and Marcus Harris were unable to take that form into the Bulls match which left them scrapping for runs throughout the middle and lower order. Travis Dean and Peter Handscomb stabilized Victoria’s innings after the two early wickets, but couldn’t go in after their good starts as both batsmen fell in the 40’s. A trio of half-centuries from Matt Short, Chris Tremain and Peter Siddle almost got the Bushrangers over the line, but the Bulls seamers got on top late in the innings and sealed the win. What was most impressive though was Peter Siddle, everyone knows he’s got scoring potential down the order, but he managed to dominate from the outset as he blasted his way to 62 off 45 deliveries. Siddle struck ten boundaries and one six in his brisk innings, albeit a rarity, it was a mighty impressive one. Fawad Ahmed finally got some recognition with the ball as he landed figures of 3/44 off his ten overs, Chris Tremain and Scott Boland however were extremely expensive despite taking three wickets between them. Peter Siddle hasn’t put a foot wrong in the JLT Cup so far, the 32-year-old kept Queensland to just 33 runs from his ten overs to go with his 62 runs. Coming up against an exuberant CA XI, Victoria will have to brace for the unexpected from an impressive young side, although results haven’t fallen their way.
They’ve improved from last years efforts, but the CA XI must keep striving to improve if they are any chance of defeating Victoria. Because of their inexperience in the squad, the CA XI have been one of the more experimental teams with their bowling attack. Just recently against New South Wales, they used eight different bowling options out of a possible ten, you can see the theory behind it so the batsmen don’t get set on any particular bowling, but at the same time they should be looking to take wickets with their strike bowlers. They’re a team who do posses a lot of bowling ability though, Clint Hinchcliffe picked up 4/71 against the Blues as a top order batsman which gives you a good indication of the amount of options they have up their sleeve. Max Bryant has been the CA XI’s most efficient batsmen, apart from the first game where he was dismissed for one, Bryant has scored 60 & 89 in his past two outings against Queensland and New South Wales. The CA XI’s batting is similar to their bowling, they have a number of players who can turn up on any given day and produce a golden innings, but they don’t have enough consistency to pin point a specific group of individuals who can be relied upon to execute that. Captain Beau Webster needs to step up for the CA XI in their forth game for the tournament coming up, his input has dropped significantly since scoring 121 runs in their first match against South Australia.
Players To Watch…
Victoria’s bowling unit might be in for a big day in the wickets department, in-particular Peter Siddle who has been close to Victoria’s most impressive player of the tournament to date. The veteran seamer has picked up five wickets in his three JLT Cup games and scored 94 runs with the bat, but more impressively has kept his bowling economy under 5.00 in all three games so far. Bushrangers captain Cameron White was dismissed cheaply against Queensland which didn’t do them any favors, but it was coming off the back of a substantial knock where White scored 165 against the Tigers in Perth. He’s clearly become Victoria’s most dominant batsman and has the hitting ability to increase his scoring input, making him the opponents number 1 objective to get rid of early. Against a team who rotates the bowling a lot, it will be interesting to see how White approaches the innings. The next player on the CA XI’s radar should be Peter Handscomb, he’s come back from India after playing a couple ODI’s and slotted straight back into place for Victoria with a solid 48 against the Bulls on return. Unlike White, Handscomb is more of an accumulator and tends to spread out his scoring around the ground, but that’s not to say he can’t clear the pickets, he went down town three times against Queensland.
Max Bryant appears to be the CA XI’s likeliest batsman to produce a score of 50+ at the top of the order, he’s already managed back-to-back fifties. With the likes of Jake Carder and Beau Webster struggling to find that same gear they hit against the Redbacks in the first game where both players scored centuries, Bryant has taken up the role as CA XI’s Mr. consistent with the bat. Hey may not be the most influential player in the side, but Jonathan Merlo has shown he is a genuine wicket taker with the ball. As an all-rounder, you have to be able to fall back on another facet of your game and that’s exactly what Merlo has done. If he can impact the scoreboard a bit more with the bat, he’d be a highly dependable individual in the side, he’s managed to pick up five wickets from his three games which isn’t a bad effort in a inexperienced & youthful side such as the CA XI. Previously mentioned in this article, Beau Webster needs to lead by example after he looked like being a dominant figure in the competition after that rampaging century against the Redbacks, only to score 58 runs in his two games since. As well as being a promising top/middle order batsman, Webster is also a handy bowling option, although his record isn’t all that flash with just the one wicket to his name in nine List-A games.
Top 5 fantasy picks | Victoria | JLT Cup | 13th match | Sydney
- Cameron White
- Peter Siddle
- Peter Handscomb
- Fawad Ahmed
- Marcus Harris
Top 5 fantasy picks | CA XI | JLT Cup | 13th match | Sydney
- Max Bryant
- Beau Webster
- Jonathan Merlo
- Clint Hinchcliffe
- Henry Thornton
Victoria (possible) – 1. Marcus Harris 2. Cameron White 3. Travis Dean 4. Peter Handscomb (c & wk) 5. Will Pucovski/Blake Thomson 6. Seb Gotch 7. Matt Short 8. Chris Tremain 9. Peter Siddle 10. Scott Boland/Wes Agar 11. Fawad Ahmed.
CA XI (possible) – 1. Jake Carder 2. Max Bryant 3. Beau Webster (c) 4. Clint Hinchcliffe 5. Param Uppal 6. Jonathan Merlo 7. Ben Pengelley 8. Henry Thornton 9. Harry Nielsen (wk) 10. Mark Steketee/Jackson Coleman/David Grant 11. Matthew Kuhnemann.
Zak Varik is an Australian columnist/writer who specializes in the sports category cricket. With over four years of experience covering all sorts of cricket tournaments around the world, Zak has gained extensive knowledge in International cricket as well as domestic.
“I’ve loved watching cricket since I was about 7 years old, my childhood hero was none other than Andrew “Roy” Symonds who probably enhanced my love of the game through the years”.
Zak is now an established writer for FCN (Fantasy Cricket News) and has also previously represented other Blogs during his time as a writer.