Big Bash League 7
End of 36th game
Adelaide Strikers and Scorchers are top of the table with equal points. Both have played 9, won 7 each. These two are followed by Hobart Hurricanes at 3rd place with 5 wins.
There are 4 teams(Sydney Sixers, Melbourne Renegades, Sydney Thunder and Brisbane Heat) at 8 points vying for 4th place. Technically Sixers cannot qualify. They have played all their 10 games with 8 points. Thunder and Heat have played 9 games, but Renegades have played 8.
The 37th game is between Renegades and Thunder, and both have strong batting line-up.
Success while batting first (setting target)
Renegades – Played 2 , won 0, lost 2
Thunder – played 4 won 2 lost 2
Renegades lost both games while batting first. Against Scorchers they lost a nail-biting finish defending 185. This must be the major reason for them to prefer chasing rather than defending. Thunder had reasonable success in defending (166 and 175)
Success while chasing a target(2nd batting)
Renegades – Played 6 , won 4 lost 2
Thunder – played 5 won 2 lost 3
Renegades have performed better while chasing a target, and once they were successful chasing 160 plus. Thunder too have become better in chasing targets.
Although point wise both teams are equal but they are totally in different scenario in this tournament. They are still growing in while setting target or defending one. Their bowling seems to be their problem.
Renegades have wealth of Int. experience in their squad – their bowling is relying heavily on variation which will be tested if they have to defend a reasonable score. In Cameron White they have an astute leader, whose success in domestic circuit is second to none!. However if he is not available(gets drafted to National side)then they require Bradley Hodge, T20 most experience player to lead them.
On the other hand, Sydney Thunder had a setback when their key spinner Arjun Nair was banned due to suspect bowling action. They rely heavily on spin and variation of Mitchell McClenaghan. In Gurinder Sandhu they have one of the best domestic new ball bowler. He is more accurate with slight change in his wrist action. Their test match veteran Shane Watson skills as a captain will be tested.
Last year(BBL06) at this time of the tournament teams(6 games before the finals) teams started to produce low 1st innings totals.
These were first batting scores in last 7 games including the finals (178,199, 134, 156,136, 167, 141). The first 2 scores were success for 1st batting, the rest of the scores were won chasing with little discomfort.
This year the success rate (end of 36th games)
Defending – 44.44%
Chasing – 55.55%
Interestingly there were hardly (so far) any nail-biting finish in this year’s BBL. Hence one wonders in future, instead of more games one can have an additional team to the current line up of 8 franchise?.
All data updated at end of 36 games