There are only three matches left to decide the winner of Big Bash League 10. The task for Sydney Thunder and Brisbane Heat is harder than it is for the other two teams left in the competition. For the Thunder and the Heat, every match from hereon is a must-win. The latter have already had to get past Adelaide Strikers in the Eliminator contest to make it to this game.
The Heat have been dominant in this fixture over the years, winning nine matches and losing just thrice. But recently, it’s been close, with either team defeating the other twice in the last four contests between the two sides. In BBL 10, the Thunder won the first game and the Heat won the second match during the league stage.
Overall: Matches – 13 | Thunder – 3 Wins | Heat – 9 Wins | No Result – 1
Last 5 Matches: Thunder – 2 Win | Heat – 2 Wins | No Result – 1
While you could go for the above team, you also have the option of choosing your own team from cricket.com’s Fantasy Research Centre. Based on algorithms we come up with six different teams that could fetch crucial points.
GROUND DETAILS & TEAM COMBINATION
There have been 11 matches held at the Manuka Oval in Canberra this season and the average run-rate here has been 8.5, which is the second highest at any venue during BBL 10. The bowling strike rate here has been 19.7 which is on the higher side as well when compared to other grounds used regularly this season. Hence, we’ve gone with eight players who can bat.
Interestingly, spinners have a better strike rate (19.1 vs 20.1), average (25.8 vs 28.5) and economy rate (8.1 vs 8.5) when compared to pacers at the Manuka Oval in this season’s BBL. But the fact that fast bowlers have bowled and taken over 60% of the overs and wickets respectively, we have gone with a pace-heavy bowling line-up.
There could be a few interesting match-ups too.
Ben Cutting and Mark Steketee were teammates in the BBL until last year, but after the former’s move from the Heat to the Thunder, they have faced each other twice this season. On both occasions, Steketee got the wicket of Cutting – two dismissals from just four deliveries. This is definitely a contest to look forward to during the death overs of the Thunder’s innings.
Chris Lynn is known to have his struggles against spin and if he does face Tanveer Sangha in this match, it’ll be interesting to see how the contest plays out. During the league stage, Lynn managed 27 runs off 19 deliveries against Sangha across two innings, with the leg-spinner dismissing the Heat skipper in the second game.
When you see Marnus Labuschagne suggested as the captain in fantasy cricket, you’d usually assume it is for his batting, but that isn’t necessarily the case this time. While he has been good with the bat, it’s his bowling that has been quite remarkable this season – nine wickets in just four matches. He has taken three wickets in each of his last two games. On the batting front, he has scored 129 runs at an average of 32.3 and strike rate of 130.3 in BBL 10.
Our Criclytics player projector predicts Labuschagne could score 11-34 runs in this match.
Alex Hales has been the outstanding batsman of BBL 10. He currently leads the batting charts, having scored 535 runs at an average of 41.2 and strike rate of 163.6. These stats are even more impressive when you consider that he was dismissed without opening his account in two of his first three innings this season. Since those early setbacks, his form has been truly remarkable.
Our Criclytics player projector predicts Hales could score 15-38 runs in this match.
In the Heat’s Eliminator clash against Adelaide Strikers, Chris Lynn was dismissed for just 6. It was his first single-digit score in the ongoing season. That shows that low scores for him have been very rare recently. He has scored 426 runs in 11 innings at an average of 38.7 and strike rate of 157.2 in BBL 10. He has scored 40+ and 25+ in six and eight of those 11 knocks respectively.
Our Criclytics player projector predicts Lynn could score 15-38 runs in this match.
Daniel Sams has been named in the squad for this match and that would come as a huge boost to the Thunder. In nine matches this season, Sams has scored 199 runs at an average of 49.8 and strike rate of 191.3 while also taking 10 wickets at a strike rate of 16. We’d have probably selected him as captain or vice-captain for this game if he wasn’t coming back from an injury.
Our Criclytics player projector predicts Sams could score 8-25 runs and take 1-2 wickets in this match.