hurricanes vs sixers
Venue: University of Tasmania Stadium, Launceston
Time: 6.35 PM
Weather: Partly cloudy. Temp. 14-21 C. High (70%) chance of showers. Northerly winds 15-25 km/h in the late afternoon
  • Sydney Sixers had a record win on Sunday
  • Hobart Hurricanes will need James Faulkner to perform
  • Challenging weather conditions might lead to a shortened game

Having recorded a record winning margin in their season opener on Sunday night, the Sydney Sixers should defeat an underwhelming Hobart Hurricanes. But that’s only if the rain stays away in what will be, at best, will be cool and blustery conditions. The Hurricanes finished sixth last season and this is their season opener… and it looks tough for them. This will be a huge upset if the Hurricanes win. Sydney Sixers to win comfortably by 4 wickets or 30 runs.

If the match can be completed then it will be a night for using local conditions to advantage. Keeping the ball on the ground and running hard between wickets might be the smart thing to do given the ground is large and the grandstands are fairly low and they don’t stop the wind from affecting the game.

Only six big Bash games have been played at Launceston, with the side batting first winning four times. Obviously that isn’t enough data to work from but the average score is only 140.The venue is a bit like an English county ground transplanted to the other side of the world, so the English players should feel comfortable here. The drop-in pitch should produce high and consistent bounce.

Hobart Hurricanes

Their list looks pretty thin but that doesn’t mean they don’t have some quality players to keep their hopes up. Dawid Malan is absent this season but they have an exciting prospect in Sandeep Lamichhane from Nepal, who could turn out to be a star this season. James Faulkner still represents great value and Matthew Wade is their Mr Reliability, but the team overall lacks confidence. Johan Botha is an exception to this and his influence on his team mates will ensure that they stick to their task.

Batting There’s no superstars in the batting line up but plenty of players who do the job that is asked of them. D’Arcy Short is promising and his batting average of 34 shows that he can score reliably. The fact that he is left-handed is also a bonus because the constant change of line for the bowlers is disruptive, no matter who you are. Should be among the Hurricanes best because he won’t be intimidated by the Sixers’ bowlers.

Ben McDermott provides great value with his batting alone given the fact that he is also a part-time wicket keeper. Later on this summer he might well be wearing green and gold again. He’s capable of scoring hundreds but scoring a fifty will be a worthy achievement against the Sixers. He’s a big wicket to get and the Sixers will need a special plan to deal with him… he’s a match winner when things go right for him.

Colin Ingram has adapted to the top order at the Hurricanes and has now played three hundred games of T20 which means that he knows what he’s doing. He has a high scoring rate of 137 per hundred balls… so the problem of getting off to a slow start is solved to an extent by his presence. He’s a lot quicker with his running than you’d think at 36 years old, which the opposition tend to underestimate at times.

Bowling James Faulkner has a huge amount of experience and is an excellent all-rounder whose name tends to be forgotten by the Australian selectors. His left arm fast-medium bowling should suit the conditions if he bowls from the correct end. What makes him different is his slower ball variations: googlies aimed at yorker length mixed in with top-spinners. He can also be very useful with the bat and is definitely a senior player that everyone respects.

Johan Botha is now moving into coaching overseas but he’s still bowling his off-breaks for the Hurricanes. Another player who has seen and experienced it all, he can be relied upon to bowl into the batter’s pads and force them to play through the leg side. He’s a competitive bowler who makes an artform out of sticking to the plan. He’ll enjoy the windy conditions.

Sandeep Lamichhane from Nepal is only 21 but has already played over one hundred T20 games. His leg spinners are challenging to any team and he looks like he’ll be around for a long time. If he can withstand the pressure that the Sixers impose with their huge hitting, and use his change of pace intelligently, then he’ll be hard to remove from the attack. I would be surprised if he goes for more than 30 runs on the night.

Sydney Sixers

The Sixers were magnificent on Sunday and they look on track to collect a hat trick of BBL titles. But the trip down to Launceston could prove a challenge due to the overconfidence that might affect their thinking, and the fairly dismal weather forecast that awaits them. Moises Henriques leads the side with an extremely level head and they have quality in all departments. Difficult to see them losing this one.

Batting Cricket is a game of momentum and when Josh Philippe gets started he finishes the game, as shown on Sunday night with his 83 off 47 balls. The Melbourne Stars bowlers lost the plot but the Hurricanes are smarter than that. Philippe will now find that he is under special attention. A negative field might be set to slow down his scoring rate.

Moises Henriques once again starred with 76 off 38 deliveries, showing that he does love to go over the rope. That might not be the best tactic at Launceston but he is smart enough to adapt his game and push the singles in the gaps and accumulate steadily. He should be able to score fifty again.

Tom Curran scored a duck on Sunday but this will be his chance to shine. Class will tell and Curran has it. If for some reason the top order fails then he should do well because he bats well when his team needs him. He can also hit big and has the talent to play at the highest level so the Hurricane attack shouldn’t worry him too much. Don’t write him off after one failure!

Bowling Steve O’Keefe destroyed the Stars with 4 for 14 on Sunday. While he won’t do that against the Hurricanes, he will pose a legitimate threat and should take at least one wicket and not go for more than 25 runs. The young and inexperienced batter is highly vulnerable to his leg spinners and is backed up by quality fielders.

Chris Jordan has a huge amount of experience and the fact that he didn’t take a wicket on Sunday could very easily change here. He’s used to playing on the smaller grounds and the high bounce suits his style. A bowler who can bowl tightly and he has a lot of experience in bowling at the death. His big frame makes him a candidate to bowl into the wind.

Ben Dwarhuis might be a good pick for the top bowler of the match. The fast-medium left-armer might be well suited to the blustery conditions that are predicted and this should produce some edges to the keeper. He must be keen to join in the fun after witnessing the carnage on Sunday night. He’ll be an improver this season and Launceston against the moderate Hurricane batting line up is a great place to get started.

Hurricanes vs Sixers: Betting Market Odds

The TopSport head-to-head market has the Sixers $1.71 favourites versus the Hurricances at $2.18.

Hurricanes vs Sixers: Best Bet

Steve O’Keefe to take the most wickets for the Sixers… you know that’s he’s done it before. He’s a smart player who still has the talent and will to succeed. He loves playing in front of loud crowds and can hit the ball straight and long.

Hurricanes vs Sixers: Best Same Game Multi

Steve O’Keefe most wickets for the Sixers x Sandeep Lamichhane most wickets for the Hurricanes x Roy Vince to be player of the match

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