NZ Super Smash


The current bottom of the table Otago Volts hosts Auckland Aces in the 14th match of the season in Super Smash T20 tournament on Thursday. Auckland Aces are currently at no. 3 in the table with 10 points while Volts yet to register a win in the season. Match 14 between Otago Volts vs Auckland Aces scheduled to start at 2 PM Local | 6:30 AM IST on Thursday, 28th December 2017.



Otago Volts were finished at bottom of the table last year with only 3 wins and 7 losses. Things not going on their way in the ongoing season too. One of their match was abandoned and they lost rest other 3 matches so far. Volts loss margins were too huge as lost to Canterbury by 134 runs and also lost to Knights by 106 runs in their first two completed matches. On Boxing day, Canterbury registered their second victory against Volts by 6 wickets. Skipper Rob Nicol and Shawn Hicks were only two players who scored half-centuries in 3 matches. Rob Nicol plays a good hand at top of the order but he didn’t get a support from rest of the batsmen. Nicol scored 26, 19 and 65* runs respectively. The explosive opener Hamish Rutherford has been dismissed for single-digit scores in all 3 innings which were the biggest setback for Volts. Rutherford should find his form back in this game crucial game hopefully, he will score some important runs for the team.

All-rounder James Neesham dropped from 12-man squad after his continuous failures in first three games. Anaru Kitchen is not available for this game as he joins New Zealand T20 squad for West Indies series. Neil Broom who was on national duties, available for this game and he will take a role back at no. 4 in the order. Broom was not on great touch during the ODIs against West Indies, this will be his chance to back in form. The newcomer Shawn Hicks batted well on his Volts debut and scored his maiden half-century in just 28 balls. He also added 19 runs in the last game. He probably play a handy innings once again for Volts and he would be a surprise package for the fantasy players. Wicket keeper Derek de Boorder is expected to continue at lower middle-order. He started well in the last game but dismissed for 15 runs off 7 balls.

The off-spin all-rounder Mark Craig has a key role to play in this game with both bat and bowl. He didn’t pick a wicket in his first two appearance in the season, but he could turn the things in quick time. Two lower-order batsmen Josh Finnie and Brad Wilson named in the 12-man squad. Both of them has a chance to be a part of playing XI on Thursday. Neil Wagner yet to bring his best with wickets in the Super Smash season. He was the major reason for New Zealand’s success in a recent test series against West Indies. But he struggles a bit in T20 format, hopefully, he will take at least 2 wickets in this game. Jacob Duffy who started the season with 5-wickets haul, has claimed a tally of 7 wickets till now. He has a chance to take 2 or more wickets in this fixture. Warren Barnes somehow bowled well in the last two matches and picked a tally of 5 wickets in those two innings. After Wagner, he could be a key bowler for Volts. Mathew Bacon has a 50/50 chance to be in the XI on Thursday.



Auckland Aces are one of the favorite in the competition. Aces has started the season with 5 wickets win over Central Stags. After lost high-scoring game by 7 runs to Knights, Aces bounced back to winning streak with another high-scoring thriller, this time it was against Firebirds. The re-match against Firebirds was abandoned and that was Aces’ last match. In all those three matches, Aces batsmen in a position to chase down scores around 200 or over 200. That proves the weakness of Aces bowling attack. Aces has made two changes in their 12-man squad. Both Martin Guptill and Glenn Phillips left the side for national duties, therefore Ronnie Hira and Jeet Raval replaces them in the squad.

On the absence of the openers Guptill and Phillips, Jeet Raval will open the innings along with either Mark Chapman or the skipper Craig Cachopa. It will be the first game for Raval in the season. The young Mark Chapman was at his best in the last game where he smashed 64 off just 24 balls with 6 fours and 5 sixes. He will be the key batsman at top of the order and once he get going, he will give a valuable points once again. Captain Craig Cachopa yet to play impressive knocks for Aces. He scored 0, 18 and 4 runs respectively in those 3 innings. The middle-order batsman Robbie O’Donnell played with a lot of responsibilities in the first two matches and scored 54* and 42* at good strike-rate. He managed to score only 9 runs in the last game, but he could be bounce back with a good knock in this game. Ben Horne had played a good innings of 31 runs in the first game. Since that, he managed to 18 runs in last two innings. He picked two wickets in the last game but bowled an expensive spell.

All-rounder from England, Sam Curran finally shined with his performances. He took Aces home safely with his blistering 27 balls half-century in the last game. He picked a wicket each in all three innings, but he bowled very expensive spells. Curran has a good chance to give you a lot of points with his all-round efforts in this game. Matt McEwan retains his spot in the 12-man squad still after the poor show in the last game. He managed to score only a run with a bat and conceded 17 runs in his one over spell. The experienced Tarun Nethula was very expensive in first two matches, but he came with a brilliant 3 for 27 in the last game. He also shined with a bat and scored a much needed 23 off 14 balls in lower-order. Teja Nidamanuru will retains his place in the XI, as he bowled some decent spell in the last game. Ben Lister claimed 3 for 30 against Knights a week ago. He remained wicket-less in the last game, hopefully will come with a good spell on Thursday. Michael Barry may be the guy who takes 12th man role in this game for Aces.




  • Rob Nicol
  • Neil Broom
  • Shawn Hicks
  • Mark Craig
  • Hamish Rutherford
  • Neil Wagner
  • Jacob Duffy
  • Warren Barnes



  • Jeet Raval
  • Craig Cachopa
  • Mark Chapman
  • Ronnie Hira
  • Robbie O’Donnell
  • Sam Curran
  • Tarun Nethula
  • Ben Lister




1. Hamish Rutherford, 2. Rob Nicol, 3. Brad Wilson, 4. Neil Broom, 5. Shawn Hicks, 6. Derek de Boorder, 7. Josh Finnie / Mathew Bacon, 8. Mark Craig, 9. Neil Wagner, 10. Jacob Duffy, 11. Warren Barnes.


1. Jeet Raval, 2. Mark Chapman, 3. Craig Cachopa, 4. Ronnie Hira, 5. Robbie O’Donnel, 6. Ben Horne / Sean Solia, 7. Sam Curran, 8. Matt McEwan / Michael Barry, 9. Tarun Nethula, 10. Teja Nidamanuru, 11. Ben Lister.





Anand Thiyagarajan

Cricket is what everyone loves. If you’re ready to play fantasy cricket but don’t know how to analyze players, consider his Articles as the foundation of your fantasy teams. Anand is a cricket blogger and fantasy cricket lover.

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