The Hundred: Northern Superchargers (W) and Welsh Fire (W)

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24 Jul 2021 | 03:54 PM
authorSomesh Agarwal

The Hundred: Northern Superchargers (W) and Welsh Fire (W)


 Northern Superchargers (W) 


Best XI:  Lauren Winfield-Hill (capt), Laura Kimmince, Laura Wolvaardt, Jemimah Rodrigues, Holly Armitage/Sterre Kalis, Alice Davidson-Richards, Beth Langston, Bess Heath (wk), Linsey Smith, Phoebe Graham, Katie Levick 

Coach: Dani Hazelle



Strengths :


  1. High Quality and stable batting unit : The Northern Superchargers feature a lot of class local and overseas batters who are consistent and aggressive both. The openers in particular feature Winfield-Hill who can give an express start to the innings and her partner Kimmince also strikes in excess of 140 for Brisbane Heat in the BBL.


Weaknesses/Concerns :


  1. Setting up a target in first innings : The Superchargers have a strong,deep and high quality batting line-up that you’d back to chase any target but setting-up a target could be a challenge if the explosive opening partnership fails as they have few slow starters and anchors to follow and a visible lack of experienced power-hitting/ free scoring player.


  1. Weak bowling unit : While the batting unit has a lot of class and all of Superchargers picks have been batting focused it has costed them their bowling unit’s quality which is a lot dependent on local options who lack pace but have some spinners who could come in handy.



Welsh Fire (M)


Squad: Ollie Pope, Jonny Bairstow, Tom Banton, Ben Duckett, Qais Ahmad*, Ryan Higgins, David Payne, Liam Plunkett, Jake Ball, Iain Cockbain, Josh Cobb, Matt Critchley, David Lloyd, Jimmy Neesham (first three games)*, Glenn Phillips*, Leus du Plooy


Coach: Gary Kirsten


Probable XI : Tom Banton,Jonny Bairstow,Ian Cockbain,Glenn Phillips(wk),Ben Duckett,Ollie Pope,James Neesham,Liam Plunkett,Qais Ahmad,Jake Ball,David Payne




  1. Explosive Openers : In Tom Banton and Jonny Bairstow, Welsh Fire have two of the most explosive English batsmen who’ll provide them with quick starts in PP and in addition to it their range vs spin makes them even more dangerous after PP and can provide their side continuous acceleration across all phases once set.


  1. Middle Order batting : Glenn Phillips the Kiwi 24 year old is one of the rising stars in T20 cricket after making a place for himself in his national side, he’s even dominated the T20 Blast’s latest edition scoring 500 runs at an average of 50 and a scoring them at a strike rate of 160+. Along with him the Welsh line-up includes Ian Cockbain who’s very dynamic and can stabilize the innings at a good scoring rate if required. Welsh Fire playing XI also includes Jimmy Neesham who could be slotted in as a finisher with him playing the same role for his national side averaging 33 and scoring at a  brilliant strike rate of 178 since 2018.


  1. New ball bowling : David Payne might be the only bowler in the Welsh Fire squad with the ability to bowl with the new ball but he has a brilliant record in the PP since 2018 conceding runs at an economy rate of 7.4 and picking up wickets at an average of 20. The left armer can bring the ball back into the right handers and is good enough at the death with a healthy economy rate of 8.62.


Weaknesses/Concerns :


  1. Middle Overs and death bowling : The Welsh Fire's bowling  does not show much promise. Liam Plunkett will be tasked with bowling the middle and death overs alongside Jake Ball, who has been on the expensive side in recent years who both lack the express pace required and are one dimensional. Qais Ahmed will be a key figure in the spin department who doesn’t have great support at the other end. To conclude bowling as a whole will remain a huge area for the Welsh Fire side.


  1. Availability issues : According to a few reports Jonny Bairstow could be called up for the Test series versus India into the England side and Welsh Fire might lose a key player from the squad whose replacement won’t be able to play the same role. The squad depth will also be tested after Neesham completes  all of his  3 games and Welsh Fire could be restricted to local options in the squad who can’t play the same role as him effectively enough , thus resulting in a significant drop in the side’s quality.


Welsh Fire (W)


Squad : Katie George, Alex Griffiths, Georgia Hennessy, Lauren Filer, Sophie Luff, Natasha Wraith, Amy Gordon, Bryony Smith, Sarah Taylor, Piepa Cleary, Georgia Redmayne, Bethan Ellis, Lissy Macleod, Nicole Harvey, Hayley Matthews


Coach : Mark O'Leary


Probable XI : Georgia Redmayne, Bryony Smith, Hayley Matthews, Sophie Luff, Sarah Taylor (wk), Katie George, Georgia Hennessy, Piepa Cleary, Lissy Macleod, Alex Griffiths, Nicole Harvey


Strengths :


  1. Batting Depth : Like many other The Hundred teams one of the features of the squad is they have batting depth till position number eight which can help them play freely and bail them out of tough situations.


  1. Bowling Variety: The Welsh Fire squad possesses a lot of variety in bowling with different options for left arm pace, right arm pace, off-spin and leg-break available allowing them to structure their playing eleven according to the opposition. Matthews, Bryony Smith and Nicole Harvey provide the spin options while there is a battery of quicks in the form of Lauren Filer, Ellis, George, Alex Griffiths, George Hennessy and Amy Gordon. 


Weakness :


  1. Bowling department : While the team has bowling options available but they are only capable of filler or support roles and the team doesn’t feature any outstanding white ball bowler who can restrict run flows in crucial phases or pick-up wickets at good rate  unlike other teams in the tournament who have at least one world class bowler. They have the weakest bowling department in the entire competition.


  1. While they do have some decent limited overs batters in the team, their quality, intent and consistency isn’t enough to compensate for their bowling attack’s because there’s a good chance it’ll be amongst the weakest performing units in the competition..


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