Matt’s Big Bash Preview

Our cricket guru Matt has his full team-by-team preview for the Big Bash, as well as a few early bets to get stuck into.

Note: all bets below were sent to members of Matt’s Sports Bets yesterday, and hence some prices may have moved.  I have every confidence that more bookies will release prices for all of these markets in the next week or so and hopefully there will be more ricks. Indeed there is every chance that they will release better prices than the prices with the 3/4 bookies already released.

Sydney Thunder

Reigning and defending champions, the Sydney Thunder return to BBL06 as the team everyone will feel they will need to beat. Their issues will be Khawaja missing 3-5 games, Watson reportedly being injured for the early part of the tournament and a lack of squad depth.

Tip: They have a decent side but are far from favourites this year.

Best early bets

Sandhu top Thunder bowler $10 Sportsbet 0.5u
Russell top Thunder bowler $3.50 Various 1.5u

Notes: Looked at Khawaja top bat and top tourney bat, but the fixtures just don’t fall well for him to play enough.

Sydney Sixers

The Sydney Sixers were the team I hated last year and correctly predicted a terrible season for them. I don’t mind them this year with two excellent English signings. Roy and Billings should play all but two of their group games. Their problems could come if they make the playoffs, as Roy and Billings will likely be in India for England’s ODI tour.

Tip: A solid side that will be fighting for a playoff place.

Best early bets

Roy top Sixers bat $7.50 Crownbet 1u
Bollinger top Sixers bowler $5 Sportsbet / Crownbet 1u

Brisbane Heat

Brisbane come into this tournament with a pretty average looking side. I don’t really think they will be able to get into the upper echelons of the table and fancy they will be fighting it out lower down. Their team is solid, but their bowling attack lacks quality to back up Badree.

Tip: Likely to be 6th – 8th.

Best early bets

Lynn top Heat batsman $3.20 Bet365 2u
Lynn top Tournament batsman $12 Bet365 1u EW ¼ top 4

Adelaide Strikers:

Adelaide are a side I like this year. They should be less effected by the Australian team than most and will likely have a settled side throughout. In Pollard they have a player who, despite seeming a nasty piece of work, will be 100% committed to his team and team mates. Rashid and Jordan will split the overseas duties and are both very capable. They have solid hitters at the top of the order, a very solid middle order and some excellent bowlers. I think they have been wrongly priced by the bookmakers and fancy they make the top 4.

Tip: Top 4.

Best early bets

Strikers to win BBL06 $9 TAB / Betting Club 1u
Strikers to make the top 4 $2.25 Crownbet 2u ($2.20 Sportsbet, $2.10 Various)
Ludeman top Strikers bat $5 Crownbet 1u

Melbourne Stars

The Melbourne Stars come into this tournament in an unusual position of not being clear favourites. I can’t really see why given the notable Scorchers injuries. The Renegades have added some good players, but the Stars are still the side to beat for me. There is a chance they will have some of their best players available for longer this year too, with Maxwell and Faulkner on the fringes of the ODI team and not involved in the test team.

They have quality all the way down the line-up and a solid set of bench players to boot.

Tip: Top 4

Best early bets

Stars to win BBL06 $6.50 Crownbet/Palmerbet 3u ($6 Various)
Stars to finish top 4 $1.80 Will Hill 3u ($1.72 Lads, $1.66 Crownbet, Palmerbet)
Wright top Stars bat $4 Sportsbet / Bet365
Maxwell top Stars bat $8 Crownbet 0.5u ($7 Various)
Hastings top Stars bowler $4 Bet365 1u
Hilfenhaus top Stars bowler $10 Sportsbet 0.5u ($9 Bet365)

Hobart Hurricanes

I hate Hobart. Despise them. They just look so bad. Sanga is getting on and after Paine, Bailey and Christian they look utterly hopeless. Their bowling looks an absolute farce too.

Tip: Spoon

Best early bets

Paine top Hobart batsman $4 Various 1u
Christian top Hobart batsman $7 Lads 1u
Tait top Hobart bowler $7 Crownbet 1u
Boyce top Hobart bowler $4 Sportsbet 1u

Melbourne Renegades

The winner of the tournament could well be in Melbourne this year. The Renegades have strengthened significantly and they now look like they could make a proper challenge after a few years of up and down form. The additions of Hogg and Narine look shrewd and despite losing a few players mid tournament, their bench looks strong. Harris is another solid signing and adds strength to their batting that looked a little flaky last year.

A bowling line-up of Narine, Bravo, Rimmington, Pattinson, Siddle and Hogg looks about as good as it gets in this form.

Tip: Top 4

Best early bets

Bravo top Renegade bowler $4 Crownbet / Bet365 3u
Bravo top tournament bowler $21 Lads / Crownbet 1.5u
Rimmington top Renegade bowler $8 Sportsbet 0.5u
Harris top Renegade bat $6 Lads ($5.50 Bet365) 1u
White top Renegade bat $3.50 Sportsbet 1u ($3.40 Various)

Perth Scorchers

Perth were my pick again this year, then they got decimated by injuries. Behrendorff, Tye, Paris and Coulter-Nile all have varying degrees of injury and I just can’t back them at a favourites price. They have class and quality in Klinger and the Marsh boys, but the brothers won’t play that much and their bowling lineup has gotten a little thin. I still think they will be competitive and if they win it will be painful, like the West Indies WT20 win last year.

Tip: 5th-6th

Best early bets

Klinger top Scorchers bat $3.75 Bet365 2.5u ($3.50 Various)
Bell top Scorchers bat $5.50 Lads 1.5u ($4.50 Various)
Willey top Scorchers bat $41 Crownbet 0.5u ($13 Various is about right)

Note. Crownbet had Willey at $21 top Scorchers bowler but the market has been pulled. If that pops back up that’s possibly the bet of the tournament.

The author runs the extremely profitable Matt’s Sports Bets service focusing on cricket (but also covering other sports).  Check it out here.