It’s last years BBL final rematch as the Sixers host the reigning champions of the competition, and they’ll be put to the ultimate test after going down to the Thunder in their BBL 07 opener. With the short boundaries at the SCG, this could be a high scoring encounter with boundaries galore.
Don’t be fooled by the Sixers misfortunes against the Thunder, they’ve got one of the most intimidating batting line-ups in this years competition that happened to have an off night at Spotless Stadium. That was reflective of their performance, a handful of batsmen got starts but couldn’t carry on which evidently cost them the match. Had one of their batsmen went on to score 50+, they would have more than likely breezed past the Thunder who only won the match on the last ball of the game. That’s all hindsight though, they’ll be hoping for improvements from Jason Roy who departed early, and Moises Henriques who’s consistency is usually unquestionable, but even he was a victim of getting carried away early in his innings. While Nic Maddinson remains their standout X factor in the top order, Daniel Hughes has been a reliable source for runs against the new ball and has hardly been dismissed cheaply in his past two seasons for the Sixers, he’s a gun when it comes to piercing the gaps in the field as well as his hard-hitting style. The Perth Scorchers potent pace attack might trouble them at times, so runs on the board are crucial when the fielding restrictions are in place, Englishman Jason Roy being the most adventurous batsman who likes to take on the bowlers and go over the top of the field should really be in his element at the SCG.
A four-wicket haul on debut for Sixers quick Daniel Sams has certainly put a target on his back for opposition batmen to back up that performance, but given his dominance against the Thunder that shouldn’t be a concern. Sams toppled the oppositions top order with his phenomenal spell of bowling, but his fellow bowlers were on the receiving end of an almighty Shane Watson batting masterclass as the Thunder captain peppered the fence with boundaries and maximums to drag the match back into balance. Regulars in the wickets department for the Sixers usually, Sean Abbott and Steve O’Keefe were unable to influence the contest a couple days ago at Spotless Stadium which was another reason they fell just short of victors. However, that won’t determine their output for this next match against Perth at the SCG, Abbott has been one of the competitions most damaging bowler at this venue and should fire back with a considerable contribution. I wouldn’t panic yet if I was a Sydney Sixers supporter, they’re just one win away from that momentum swing that clicks teams into gear for the rest of the tournament. Knocking off last seasons BBL champions would also increase their confidence levels considerably, so players like Roy, Maddinson and Abbott must show their class and take centre stage in this game.
The reigning champions of the competition have already been dealt a massive blow with the devastating news surrounding Michael Klinger’s wife, Klinger understandably withdrawing himself from the early stages of the BBL to give his partner the overwhelming support that is required. It’s not only Klinger who will be absent from the side, Cameron Bancroft & the Marsh brothers (Shaun & Mitchell) are all currently representing Australia in the Ashes which really does open the door for the Sydney Sixers tomorrow. There’s no doubt it’s going to be difficult to challenge an opposition side on their home deck with a significant part of your batting line-up missing, but that just gives the likes of Hilton Cartwright, Ashton Turner, Josh Inglis and even the prolific ball-striker David Willey a chance to show the Sixers what they’ve got to offer without the “regulars”. Without their usual opening combination, England all-rounder David Willey could get his opportunity to open the batting and go berserk on the small boundaries. The 27-year-old has scored two T20 centuries in his career, better than a pinch-hitter and a secret weapon that the Sixers might not be planning for. Skipper Adam Voges will most-likely be relied upon to anchor the innings with a sizable score himself, the 38-year-old Western Australian has been representing Middlesex since retiring from International cricket.
We haven’t yet seen the best of Ashton Turner yet, he averages just 17.31 in twenty20 cricket despite his enormous figure and big-hitting capabilities, he’s shown glimpses of just how far he can hit a ball in BBL cricket but is yet to put together a solid campaign. Somewhere the Perth Scorchers will excel in tomorrow should be the bowing side of things, they’ve always had a seam-friendly attack due to the WACA’s pace & bounce that really does become a troublesome road trip for interstate teams. Although the venue is at the SCG, elite seam bowling can’t be limited to just one venue which should see Mitchell Johnson, Joel Paris, Jhye Richardson and David Willey send some searing thunderbolts down regardless of the pitch. Some of these guys can execute the yorker to perfection, it takes just one ball to rattle some of the Sixers stumps and the Scorchers are in the hunt early. Andrew Tye can’t be discounted either, he’s in a small group of bowlers who have mastered the slower ball, each of them unique and slightly different which takes the pace off the ball making it a nightmare to aggressively attack. The part-time spin of Ashton Turner could also be a bit of a element of surprise, he’s managed to pick up a wicket or two opening the bowing with his off-spin in past tournaments.
Top 5 fantasy picks | Sydney Sixers | BBL | 5th match | Sydney
- Jason Roy
- Moises Henriques
- Sean Abbott
- Daniel Sams
- Nic Maddinson
Wildcard pick – Peter Nevill
Top 5 fantasy picks | Perth Scorchers | BBL | 5th match | Sydney
- Adam Voges
- Mitchell Johnson
- David Willey
- Andrew Tye
- Ashton Turner
Wildcard pick – Hilton Cartwright
Sydney Sixers (possible) – 1. Jason Roy 2. Daniel Hughes 3. Nic Maddinson 4. Moises Henriques (c) 5. Sam Billings 6. Peter Nevill (wk) 7. Johan Botha 8. Steve O’Keefe 9. Sean Abbott 10. Daniel Sams 11. Doug Bollinger.
Perth Scorchers (possible) – 1. Will Bosisto 2. David Willey 3. Hilton Cartwright 4. Adam Voges (c) 5. Ashton Turner 6. Josh Inglis (wk) 7. Ashton Agar 8. Andrew Tye 9. Mitchell Johnson 10. Jhye Richardson 11. Joel Paris/James Muirhead.