BBL07 Team by Team Preview (Part 2)
The seventh season of the Big Bash is upon us and it is looking like the best one yet. A lot of familiar faces are returning as well as some fresh emerging talent. The season has expanded with 43 matches to be played in all, up from 35 last year. Four new venues will see matches this season, with games to be played in Canberra, Launceston, Geelong and Alice Springs. Could we see new teams in these cities next year? Here is a preview of all the teams in this installment of the Big Bash and highlight all the players you should be putting in your Draftstars teams.
Michael Beer, Scott Boland, Jackson Coleman, Ben Dunk, James Faulkner, Seb Gotch, Evan Gulbis, Peter Handscomb, Sam Harper, John Hastings (c), Ben Hilfenhaus, Glenn Maxwell, Kevin Pietersen (UK), Rob Quiney, Marcus Stoinis, Dan Worrall, Luke Wright (UK), Adam Zampa.
The Stars have made minimal changes to their squad for this year’s tournament, but have made one marquee inclusion. BBL06’s leading run scorer, Ben Dunk, has made the move from the Strikers, in what looks like a great pickup for the Stars. Dunk will solidify their top order and add depth when the yearly international decimation occurs. The Stars will likely lose Maxwell, Faulkner, Boland, Handscomb, Zampa and Stoinis for various periods of the tournament, which may impact them come finals time.
The best players to choose from the Stars will depend on who is available for them. Glenn Maxwell is in incredible form and he is one of the best T20 players in the world. He bats, bowls and fields at an elite level and is usually a lock for your Draftstars team. Kevin Pietersen is still a classy batsmen who could probably be playing for England. He is also bitter enough about his axing a few years ago that he will be looking to score well early in the tournament. Zampa and Boland are their best two wicket taking bowlers.
Sean Abbott, Sam Billings (UK), Jackson Bird, Johan Botha, Harry Conway, Ben Dwarshuis, Jack Edwards, Mickey Edwards, Moises Henriques (c), Daniel Hughes, Nathan Lyon, Nic Maddinson, Peter Nevill, Steve O’Keefe, Jason Roy (UK), Jordan Silk, Mitchell Starc, Henry Thornton.
The Sixers have rejuvenated their squad for BBL07 with three retirees making way for some quality players. Brad Haddin, Michael Lumb and Ryan Carters have all retired and have been replaced by Peter Nevill and Henry Thornton. It is a really good sign that the Sixers have remained relatively stable after they made the grand final last year. If they get lucky being able to play most of their international players (O’Keefe, Lyon, Maddinson, Abbott and Nevill) then the Sixers should expect to make the finals and would be in with a big shot of winning the title.
They key batsmen for the Sixers are their two English imports Sam Billings and Jason Roy. Both are explosive top order players who, along with Maddinson and Henriques make up a strong top four. Bowling wise, the Sixers have last year’s highest wicket taker in Sean Abbott as well as the tournament’s stingiest bowler in Steve O’Keefe. The Sixers look like they will be able to do a lot of damage, especially early on in the Big Bash.
Fawad Ahmed, Aiden Blizzard, Jos Buttler (UK), Pat Cummins, Andrew Fekete, Callum Ferguson, Ryan Gibson, Chris Green, Liam Hatcher, Usman Khawaja, Jay Lenton, Mitchell McClenaghan (NZ), Clint McKay, Arjun Nair, Kurtis Patterson, Ben Rohrer, Garinder Sandhu, Shane Watson (c).
The Sydney Thunder have followed up on their disappointing season by losing their best player to a doping ban (Andre Russell) as well as losing their best batsman, Eoin Morgan who will be representing England for the majority of the tournament. They have added a couple of exciting players, with Jos Buttler and Mitchell McClenaghan joining the team. The Thunder started the Big Bash as the perennial cellar dwellers before they rose from the bottom to win a title thanks to Khawaja somehow being left out of the Australian team. Even though they regress last year, they have a good chance of rocketing up the ladder again.
Much of the Thunder’s season depends on how much time Usman Khawaja gets to play. Khawaja is one of the best T20 openers in the country, but he might be tied up with Australian ODI duties. Callum Ferguson is a player who knows how to construct his innings. He is always good for a 30-odd of 20 balls so should always be consideration for your teams. Mitchell McClenaghan looks to be their primary strike bowler and Fawad Ahmed is always good for a few wickets.
Ashton Agar, Cameron Bancroft, Jason Behrendorff, Hilton Cartwright, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Cameron Green, Josh Inglis, Mitchell Johnson, Michael Klinger, Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Joel Paris, Jhye Richardson, Ashton Turner, Andrew Tye, Sam Whiteman, David Willey (UK), Adam Voges (c).
Last year’s champions will look to go back to back and have come in with an almost unchanged squad. They have lost the class of Ian Bell, but they still have an abundance of experience in their lineup with the likes of Michael Klinger, Adam Voges and Shaun Marsh. They are stacked with all-rounders with Mitch Marsh, Ashton Agar, Ashton Turner, David Willey and Hilton Cartwright all set to play most of the tournament.
Hilton Cartwright is an intriguing player. He will likely be very cheap, but seems likely to get a really good opportunity for the Scorchers this season. A stretch of good form might even see him return to the national side. Michael Klinger remains the best builder of an innings in Australian T20 and Andrew Tye is one of the best death bowlers in the game. The Scorchers looked primed to go back to back, and with the final already locked in at the WACA ground, they will be very hard to beat.
BBL SCORING SYSTEM
**All stats are provided by Fox Sports
Per Run Scored = 1 point
Boundary Bonus: 4 = 1 point
Boundary Bonus: 6 = 2 points
Strike Rate Bonus = 1 point
For every run a player scores above the amount of balls faced: (e.g. if a player scores 40 off 26 balls, they score an additional 14 points)
Dot Ball = 1 point
Maiden Over Bonus = 15 points
Wicket = 25 points
3 or More Wicket Bonus = 10 points
Extras Penalty (wide or no-ball) = -1 point
Economy Rate Bonus (4 or less runs per over) = 25 points
Economy Rate Bonus (4.01 – 5 runs per over) = 20 points
Economy Rate Bonus (5.01 – 6 runs per over) = 15 points
Economy Rate Bonus (6.01 – 7 runs per over) = 10 points
Economy Rate Bonus (7.01 – 8 runs per over) = 5 points
Catch = 10 points
Stumping = 15 points
Run Out = 20 points