Fitting that the Stars feature in this Boxing Day blockbuster given the GPP’s that DS and MB have tossed up reminded me immediately of Boland’s ‘effort’ with the ball at the Gabba last week – lacking much thought and/or effort.
Despite their best efforts though I am sure there will no shortage of punters looking for some form on today’s game so once more unto the breach we go dear friends.
Scorchers: Michael Klinger, Will Bosisto, David Willey, Hilton Cartwright, Ashton Turner, Adam Voges, Ashton Agar, Josh Inglis, Mitchell Johnson, Jye Richardson, Andrew Tye, (Josh Phillipe, Joel Paris)
Stars: Luke Wright, Ben Dunk, Rob Quiney, Glen Maxwell, Peter Hanscombe, Marcus Stoinis, James Faulkner, John Hastings, Adam Zampa, Will Boland, Michael Beer, (Dave Worrall, Evan Gulbis)
Klinger is named, so will play and open, with Phillipe the likely man to make way. I can’t see Paris forcing his way into this bowling outfit after what they did to the Sixers.
Given the plethora of all-round talent in the Stars middle order the visitors have bolstered their batting second up with Bobby Quiney, who will either open or slot in at #3 ,and Handscombe who will bat #4 or #5 but slide big if hitting is required late.
Dave Worrall loves Perth and could easily be a late in here, his swing has caused the Scorchers havoc on a few occasions, so don’t be surprised to see him come in for one of their front line bowlers.
Six Good Nuts
Bowler - Mitchell Johnson
Will get his 4 overs which is more guarantee than any other Stars bowler, and at Perth you kind of just have to pay the money for him. If your not taking Willey then MJ is a must for Scorchers wicket coverage. Tye got lucky last start with the time he was bowled and I can’t see him repeating those numbers here with that batting line-up. Watch the Stars final XI as Worrall will be value if named.
Batsman - Peter Handscombe
Turner the obvious gun but I’m going left field here and taking Peter Handscombe who is an absolute bargain. Does also represent great danger though. If the Stars bat second and chase a small total with few early losses he won’t be used, and if they bat first and their top order fires he will likely slide to #6 or even #7. But the scenario exists here given the Scorchers bowling prowess that Handscombe will come in with plenty of overs to bat and a real job to do to save his team. Has the talent and the temperament to do it too and again, that price in this game is very hard to miss. The perfect BBL fantasy dilemma pick.
All-Rounder – David Willey
I just can’t go near Faulkner after a first up 1 over spell. Well priced and a good option if he gets his 4 overs but it’s a take on trust option. Need another game of watching the big Duke ‘captain’ before taking a Stars bowler. Like Maxwell here on price and if Worrall is named he could get a few overs with the ball, Stoinis won’t repeat that stupid score again this series. Agar solid cheap option whilst Willey looks the safe play. Will get his 4 overs with ball and bat top 4. Has been in form with the bat in England.
Keeper – Ben Dunk
Im taking Dunk as I’ve saved elsewhere and if you don’t have him and he gets a start you wont cash. That simple. Can be absolutely brutal with the bat when on regardless of who is bowling, but I agree it’s a lot to spend on an opener taking guard against that Scorchers bowling attack. Multiple teams would do well to take the Scorchers youngster Inglis in a few line-ups and spread the cash elsewhere.
Pod Pick – Glenn Maxwell
Almost no way that Maxy doesn’t grit his way to a score here given the emotion involved for him. If he gets the first two away you can mark him down for a big 50+ score. Will be relatively low owned on price (especially if DS keep him on the injured list).
Avoid – John Hastings
Didn’t know s**t from shoe polish in Brisbane when it came to his bowling options and field placings and you could tell that frustration spilled over into the Stars middle order. Bowled poorly and not enough and bats too deep these days to really trouble the scorers with the willow. Would be picking him on the player he was, not the player I saw first up last Wednesday night. Hope he gets back to his best but until he does I'm going nowhere near.