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BBL08 Game 25: Melbourne Stars v Perth Scorchers

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We’ve seen a few times this season that 10 wickets and a little bit of economy gets you to 300pts which is creeping very close to the cashline most nights...

The Re-cap

We nailed / got lucky with the weather last night, falling into a min-cash (despite Ferguson and Buttler’s best efforts) in the reduced overs game in Sydney. Last night is a perfect example for coaches reluctant to take say a top 3 as well as an opening spinner – Cook scored a fantasy ton last night despite bowling to an on-fire McCullum/Bryant/Lynn. BBL DFS can swing very quickly, so long as you have exposure in all stages of the game you are in with a shot.

Now then, the hard work has been done and we’ve come out of the early January grind and into the rep period where there is a staggering amount of value to be found with the best players off on national duties.

Likely XI’s

Game 25: Stars v Scorchers @ MCG

Stars – Dunk, Maddinson, Larkin, Gotch, Bravo, Merlo, Gulbis, Plunkett, Boland, Beer, Bowe (O’Connell, Bird)

  • Value galore for coaches in the Stars as two top order batsman and 4-8 overs of bowling leaves for national duties. Expect Maddinson to bat top 3 (likely open) with Gotch elevated to #4. Bravo/Merlo/Gulbis the lower order batsman then the four bowlers. Bowe/O’Connell/Beer to share two spinner spots on a deck that has been a bit of a road for the seamers.

Scorchers –Klinger, Bancroft, Cartwright, Turner, Agar, Bosisto, Hardie, Willey, Coulter-Nile, Tye, Kelly (Quadir Whiteman)

  • Three out for Perth as well with no Mitch Marsh and 8 full overs with the ball comes out sans Ritcho and Behrendorph. Kelly straight in and gets his 3-4 overs. Willey likely opens the bowling with NCN. The youngster Hardie is an all-rounder, good chance to be named ahead of Whiteman here who looks on the outer with Bancroft back taking the gloves. Cartwright should see the #3 spot again.

Selection Committee

Six changes gives a big advantages to those who have been watching closely so far this season. I must admit I’m torn as to how to approach this. There is so much value that taking Bravo and NCN at the top is very doable, especially if the rookie Hardie plays. The team I’ve gone for though is a Scorchers bowler-stack where all 20 overs (or close enough) of the Scorchers bowling innings is in my side. We’ve seen a few times this season that 10 wickets and a little bit of economy gets you to 300pts which is creeping very close to the cashline most nights, so when I have the chance to grab a whole bowling unit I’ll take it. Add Cartwright and young Gotch who I think will be the two biggest beneficiaries from the loss of Marsh/Maxwell/Stoinis in terms of batting exposure and we’ve got a side. If the Stars score over 140 tonight this team may struggle but with their two biggest batting weapons gone that top six looks shaky.


David Willey ($16,100): Very likely to open the bowling which is where he is his most destructive, especially if he gets it to swing a little and take it away from the two left-handers. I don’t expect him to bat high tonight but they like his power hitting so he is always a chance to be elevated if the game dictates it. Didn’t play last game and is only averaging 28pts from 5 games so I don’t expect his ownership to where it should be.

Hilton Cartwright ($11,700): Without Marsh there is a very good chance that Carty gets the #3 spot here. Of course they could go with Whiteman in the top 3 but if he doesn’t play Carty is the big beneficiary. Loves coming in early with time to construct his innings. Will love the MCG.

Ashton Agar ($18,200): Agar always delivers at the MCG with it’s long straight boundaries. His price tag has rocketed too which makes me like him even more given the ownership hit he is likely to take. Solid chance to bat #5 too especially if Whiteman doesn’t play and his fielding is always good for a catch or two.

Seb Gotch ($12,800): Expect Gotch to bat #4 tonight in a severely depleted Stars top order. He hasn’t really got a bat yet but the kid can bat time or go hard depending on the situation.

Matthew Kelly ($8,200): Young quick who is much much better than his price tag suggests. Pretty locked in to 4 overs and in a Scorchers bowlers stack he is a great cheap option for this side.

Andrew Tye ($13,500): The man with so much variety is getting picked by every batsman in the comp this season, averaging just 19pts in five games. If the Stars top order fails though Tye is in the perfect smash spot to mop up the lower order. Love Tye much more if the Stars bat first.

Nathan Coulter-Nile ($18,000): Completes the Scorchers bowler stack. Will get his four overs at crucial times. Can make an argument to take Bravo here for some more exposure to Stars bowling and batting but this team is built on not missing any Scorchers wickets so while I don’t usually like taking him we’re picking and sticking.

Final Thought

If the Stars don’t bat well this team goes well it’s that simple. I don’t mind a Larkin/Carty/Tye/Bravo lineup where you take both first drops and both bowling closers. That kind of exposure appeals strongly. Don’t sleep on Gulbis tonight. He is an ideal pod who could get a shift up the order and/or see plenty of time at the crease and can always bowl a few overs if one of the spinners is going the journey.

BBL08 Balance

Games: 24

Spend: $360

Win: $428.77