Round 12 of the BBL08 regular season gets underway this Tuesday night in the second game of a double header. The Sydney Sixers and Adelaide Strikers will face off from 7pm and we preview that game, plus the other three matchups in Round 12 below!
The BBL reigning champion Adelaide Strikers currently sit in sixth place on the table with four wins and six losses from their 10 games. They still have a game in hand over the majority of the competition, but will need to win at least three of their remaining four games to find themselves in the finals. They were disappointing against the Stars in their last matchup, being bowled out for just 123 in reply to the Stars 2/167.
The Sixers have been the surprise packet of the BBL08 season so far and continued to impress as they became the second team to beat the Hobart Hurricanes last week. Sydney chased down Hobart's total of 172 in just 17.1 overs, losing just one wicket along the way in a dominant batting performance. They currently sit third on the BBL table with six wins from 11 games.
The Sixers continue to get the job done depsite people having written them off since the start of the year. One more win here would almost guarantee them a spot in the finals and at home, with some fantastic batting form behind them, we think they win here.
The Melbourne Renegades currently sit second on the BBL08 table with seven wins from their 12 games. With just two games to play, a win in one of them will guarantee a spot in the top four, although they do have two tough games against the Thunder and Hurricanes to come. The Renegades captured a dominant win in their last match in Perth, batting first and compiling 157 on the back of a great team batting performance before bowling out Perth for just 79.
The Thunder currently sit fifth on the BBL08 table with five wins and a no contest from their 11 games. With three games to play, they'll likely need to win two of them to give themselves a chance at playing finals this season. They too, captured a great win over Perth in their last match, chasing down 181 in 19.2 overs on the back of a brilliant hundred to Callum Ferguson.
The Thunder batting lineup has been fantastic of late, scoring over 180 in two of their last three games with two hundreds. Tough game to call here but the Renegades haven't been great in must win games over the past few years and we think the Thunder cause an upset here.
Hobart Hurricanes vs Adelaide Strikers (Thursday 31st Jan 7.30pm AEDT)
The Hurricanes are in the enviable position of being able to cruise through to the finals knowing that one more win from their three remaining games would secure top spot on the BBL08 table and a home Grand Final if they should make it. However, with games against the Strikers, Renegades and Thunder to come, it's not quite time to put the feet fully up for the Canes. Hobart were dominant in their last game, restricting Brisbane to just 145 off their 20 overs before chasing down the total in just 14.2 overs as opener D'Arcy Short compiled another brilliant 50.
The Strikers currently sit sixth on the BBL table and will likely need to win all three of their remaining games to qualify for the finals this season. They are two games behing the Stars in fourth place, so other results will need to go their way as well. The Strikers were beaten comfortably in their last match against the Sydney Sixers, making just 124 batting first before the Sixers chased down the total in 14.1 overs. The Strikers batting has really struggled this season and they have once again had to rely on their bowling unit to get them out of tight spots.
Hard to look past the Hurricanes here. Whiel this game is in Launceston instead of Hobart, the Canes remain undefeated in Tasmania this season and have shown great ability when both setting a target and chasing. We think they get reveng on the Strikers after the Grand Final loss last season by bouncing them from finals contention at home.
We had high hopes for both Brisbane and Perth heading into the BBL08 season, however, they currently sit in 7th and 8th position respectively with just three wins each from 11 games. The Scorchers were dismally bowled out for just 79 in their last clash against the Renegades and with the loss, lost any chance of making the finals. The new Perth Stadium hasn't proved to be the fortress that the WACA was for the Scorchers, which saw them become the most succesful franchise in the BBL through the first 7 seasons.
With an extremely talented batting line-up, it's a shame that the Heat could only put it together in a few games this season. They have now lost their last three games in a row and have no chance of making the finals with just three to play. They compiled just 145 in their last match against the Hurricnaes and could only take one wicket in Hobart's succesful run chase.
Tough game to call here between the two most disappointing sides in BBL08 so far. Perth looked like they may have turned a corner in the batting department with the inclusions of Mitch and Shaun Marsh last week, however, their performance against the Renegades suggests otherwise. Amazingly, we still think the Heat have the more fragile batting lineup. Chris Lynn and Brendon McCullum are all or nothing player, and lately, it's been mostly nothing.
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