A $20k GPP thrown up again by Draftstars (kudos) gives coaches no excuses not to get amongst the cash tonight in Hobart as the Renegades travel to Bellerive to take on the Hurricanes.
It’s tough for coaches to pick who will play where tonight with so many new faces in each squad, and so many options within each squad as to line-up flexibility and bowling options.
After the Stars ‘effort’ last night though with Faulkner bowling just 1 over and KP/Maxy throwing their wickets away like they did, I’m taking nothing for granted nor ruling anything out (other than Duke Hastings should be swabbed for that captaincy effort in the field!).
Pitch wise tonight you’ll note both teams can easily fill 10-12 overs of spin, this is mainly due to the fact that Blundstone can tend to be a bit of a road at times, plus the 50m (at best) square boundary that the quicks usually have to contend with.
If the Gades bat first I’ll be stacking the batting, they will have at least seven recognised batsmen and I think the Canes have shown over the years they can be dismissed quite cheaply even at home.
Hurricanes: Short, Doolan, McDermott, Bailey, Wade, Christian, Reardon, Rose, Archer, Boyce, Mills, (Kingston, Summers)
Renegades: Finch, Ludeman, White, Hodge, Bravo, Nabi, Cooper, Wildemuth, Tremain, Richardson, Hogg, (Harris, Crone)
Order and Overs
Doolan has been opening in both trials and playing well, which Bailey acknowledged in some comments yesterday. I expect he gets the chance to stamp the position first up here with Wade batting #5. Lest we have a repeat of Faulkner-gate, the four Canes bowlers should all get their 4 overs each with Short and Christian to share the remainder.
For the Gades I’ve got Ludeman opening on trial form, pushing Harris out of the side completely. That whole middle order (#4-#7) will float and I expect Hodge will be more than happy to let the big hitters climb up a few rungs if the top order get off to a start, so beware taking the veteran as you are basically banking on a Renegades top order collapse.
With Bravo and Nabi there Finch can afford to bring a third paceman along, giving them seven (yes, Cooper’s rubbish offy’s count now apparently) bowling options. Teams that have this luxury tend to make use of it instead of taking extra batsmen they simply won’t use.
Expect Hoggy and Nabi to both get their 4 each, whilst Richardson and Bravo should both see at least 3 each. Tremain, Cooper and Wildemuth to share the remaining 5-6 overs for mine.
Six Good Nuts
Bowler – Brad Hogg
I don’t care if he is 75; the man goes in my team no matter what. He’s coming off a few good games to finish BBL06 so he is pricey, but no one in Australia can pick his wrong-un and if he gets half a look at that tail the ton beckons. Finch used him really poorly last year as a defensive bowler not a wicket-taker, and set even poorer fields, so I’m hoping that Hodge chirps up a bit to avoid seeing The Tongue get farmed by the middle order as much as he did last season.
Batsman – George Bailey
The guy is just safe from a fantasy point. Will be highly owned at that $14k price tag but he just seems to deliver every game and if the Canes lose early wickets he will have to do it again. Doesn’t throw his wicket away (screw you KP!), which I really like in a batsman, and at home expect he has that bit of extra grit to get his team off to a better start than last season’s horror opener in Sydney.
Keeper – Tim Ludeman
This is a great game for Keeping options and coaches can expect all three keepers to be around that 33% ownership. If you are fading Finch as I will be in most teams, then Ludeman is a good safety as he will open and is coming off a lazy 98 in the warm-up game last week. With the two international pacemen debuting for the Canes I am a little hesitant to take Renegades openers, but form is form and this price is right.
All-Rounder – Mohammed Nabi
Again another excellent field here which makes all-rounder crucial to victory tonight. I can make a good case for all but Wildermuth here who will likely bat #8 and get just 2 overs. I’m taking Nabi based on the four overs of spin rather than anything he could do from #6 with the bat. Last year teams tried to belt Narine given Hogg was at the other end, and it never worked out well for them as Narine cleaned up. No one will have seen him either. Short opening and getting 1-2 overs of spin is solid exposure whilst Bravo and Christian are proven fantasy guns so this selection really does come down to how you see the game going and the price.
POD Pick – Clive Rose
With Hogg and Nabi in there and also Boyce’s price tag, Clive Rose will be the forgotten man tonight. I really like him as a player and he always plays well in Hobart. His 1/28 off 4 and a lazy 29 (off 16!) in January last year against the Scorchers gives a good guide as to what he can do when it’s his night.
Avoid – Nathan Reardon
Coming in at #7 I just can’t see Reardon getting the overs he needs. Good when on but those days are few and far between nowadays and for that price I’m looking elsewhere.