Big Bash League (BBL04) Round 3 Preview, Tips and Promos

December 27th 2014, 11:06pm, By: Mr.Cricket

Big Bash League (BBL04) Round 3 Preview, Tips and Promos

After a slow start to the season, we bounced back in Round 2 of the Big Bash League with +7.1 units for the round to get us back in the black. Hopefully we can push forward from here and continue to find good value with a few form lines to work from.

Round 2 was the rise of the Sixers who won two strong games to jump to the top of the ladder. Also undefeated are the Strikers who won a thrilling game in Perth with a final over six. I still feel that the Strikers are punching a little above their weight and will be tested against the Hurricanes this round on New Years Eve.

Round 3 will also be vital for the two Melbourne based teams who are yet to record a win between them! If they can’t break the duck this round then their seasons may be slipping away.

Sunday Dec 28th – Brisbane Heat vs Melbourne Stars (Gabba)

Two teams that sat out Round 2 to lick their wounds from a winless Round 1, the Stars head to the Gabba to take on the Heat on Sunday night. And rather incredibly, it’s the battle of 7th versus 8th!

The preseason favourites suffered two terrible losses in Round 1, and will be desperate to bounce back. They have the personnel, but it appears they just need to attack the game a bit more. They can’t rely on their reputations alone to win matches. White and Wright are a proven successful opening combination, but guys like Maxwell, Hussey and Faulkner need to fire. Rob Quiney comes into the squad for Kevin Pietersen who was released back to the UK to spend Christmas with his family.

A bigger concern is their bowling which just couldn’t hit good areas in either match. Bird needs to strike early, while Faulkner and Hastings need to show their experience and avoid bowling a hittable length. Clint McKay comes into the squad for his first game which should help considerably.

The Heat ran into a white-hot Thunder top order in Round 1, so can probably put that one down as a bit of an anomaly and look to move forward. They will definitely miss Joe Burns after being called up to the Australian Test team, but they have added Ben Cutting to the squad after recovering from a groin injury. His bowling will be useful, but almost more importantly, his late order hitting power will be greatly appreciated.

The Heat also need to attack the game more. Bat their best at the top of the order, and open the bowling with some strike power to get an early breakthrough.

Verdict: You can get a price on $2.30 for Brisbane if you fancy and upset, and we certainly think that Brisbane are a quality side capable of beating anyone. But the Stars losing the first three matches of the season after being undefeated last year? Surely not? We’re going to back the Stars to get their act together and back them at the early price of $1.73 at Ladbrokes.

We also think that the Stars for the title at $7 at Sportsbet is worth a flutter. If they win this match, you won’t see that price again. If they lose, it could almost be season over.

Monday Dec 29th Sydney Sixers vs Perth Scorchers (SCG)

A huge match between two form teams as the Scorchers play away from home for the first time against the undefeated, top-of-the-table Sixers.

The Scorchers were tremendous against the Renegades last round with Klinger making one of the best hundreds you’ll see, while Behrendorff is dominating with the ball. They still have a problem with batting depth if their top order misfires, and it will be a challenge coming up against one of the strongest new ball attacks in the league.

Lee, Bollinger and Starc are international-level bowlers, and they proved too much for the Thunder to overcome. Once again they’ll want to make early breakthroughs to expose like likes of Turner and Agar in the Scorchers middle order.

With the bat, the Sixers have been very consistent. Nic Maddinson has been exceptional, but he has been well supported by Lumb, Henriques, Wessels and Silk.

Verdict: This will be a beauty. Sydney are warm favourites and we think they might just make it 4-0 if their bowlers can get a few early wickets.

Tuesday Dec 30th - Melbourne Renegades vs Sydney Thunder (Etihad Stadium)

An important game pits the Melbourne Renegades up against the Sydney Thunder. It’s important for both sides to really get a feel for where they are at this season.

The Renegades are sitting 0-2 and would be disappointed with their efforts so far, but they have come up against two solid teams and away from home, so they’ll enjoy being back under the roof at Etihad.

They have failed to fire with the bat, with Finch yet to make an impact. I feel they have their order a bit upside down, with too much responsibility on Ferguson and Cooper who are yet to prove themselves in T20’s. I’d rather see the West Indian duo of Bravo and Russell given more overs to go whack.

The ball has been the big problem and they really missed Siddle, Rimmington and Pattinson in Perth. Those three have been named in their squad for this match. They don’t have a lot of strike power outside of those guys, and it’s showed in their two games this season.

The Thunder were brought back to Earth last match against the Sixers, but Aiden Blizzard was a shining light with an awesome innings that brought some respectibility to the scoreline after the top order failed. His form gives their batting a bit more grunt outside of the openers in Hussey and Kallis. They are also quite potent with the ball with Nannes, Sandhu and Cummins all bowling well.

Verdict: The Thunder have no doubt improved this season, and if that’s the case, this is the sort of match they could win. But they are a squad with a fair bit to learn still, while the Renegades will be desperate to perform at home. If they lose, Melbourne teams will be 0-6 this season, but with some good additions to their squad, we think this is one they can win.

Wed Dec 31st – Adelaide Strikers vs Hobart Hurricanes (Adelaide Oval)

The match of the round sees the Strikers host the Hurricanes in a spectacular New Years Eve clash. The Strikers are sitting pretty, undefeated after two matches, but they only snuck in against the Scorchers with a thrilling last over six from Adam Zampa to grab the win.

The Strikers have a lot of strike power at the top of the order with Ludeman, Simmons and Hodge, but I still feel they have holes in their batting if things go wrong early. Their bowling has impressed with T20 specialists Richardson and Laughlin leading the way, and Zampa bowling as well as any spinner in the country.

The Hurricanes started the season well, but were outplayed in their first home game against the Sixers. They batted ok, with Bailey leading the way with a cracking innings, but they were blown away early with the ball. Mennie and Hilfenhaus were not as effective as the previous game, which left too much pressure on their spinners.

This will be a great match, and a highlight will be watching Darren Sammy and Kieron Pollard in action against each other.

Verdict: The Hurricanes have the batting depth to go full throttle for the entire match which they have proven so far in their two games. If they can bowl well then it puts a lot of pressure on the Strikers top order to perform. Happy to back the Hurricanes to pile on the runs and grab the win at a really good price.

Betting

Overall: +2.22 units

Melbourne Stars (vs Brisbane Heat) @1.73 at Ladbrokes (2 units)
Sydney Sixers (vs Perth Scorchers) @$1.80 at Betfair (1 unit)
Melbourne Renegades (vs Sydney Thunder) @$1.80  at Ladbrokes (1 unit)
Hobart Hurricanes (vs Adelaide Strikers) @$1.95
 at Ladbrokes (2 units)

Futures Update

After two rounds of the Big Bash, we thought it would be a good idea to check on the progress of our futures bets that we made in our Big Bash Season 4 Preview.

Finals

Sydney Sixers to make the final - $4.25 at Sportingbet (2 units)
Sydney Sixers to make the semis - $2.15 at Luxbet (5 units)

With a perfect 3-0 start, the Sixers are right on track to at least make the semi-finals which was our most confident play of the year. And this is despite some terrible injuries and withdrawals. We’re in strong shape for both of these bets at this stage.

Wooden Spoon

Sydney Thunder to win wooden spoon - $4.75 at Luxbet (3 units) 

After Round 1, we were a little nervous with the Thunder performing so well, but they were brought back down to earth with a  loss in Round 2 to be 1-1. They certainly showed some fight, so we might be in some trouble with this bet unless their form takes a nosedive.

Leading Run Scorers

Luke Wright - $17 at Luxbet (1 unit)   (58 runs) – Two ok starts but has some work to do to make a big score
Nic Maddinson - $19 at Luxbet  (0.5 units)  (125 runs – 2nd overall) – Looking in ominous form that will hopefully lead to more big knocks
Mike Hussey - $26 at Sportsbet  (0.4 units)  (113 runs – currently 3rd overall) – Incredible first game, missed out in the next. Looking great.
Matthew Wade - $31 at Luxbet (0.4 units) (49 runs) – Much like Wright, two ok starts but no big scores
Sam Whiteman - $101 at Sportsbet (0.2 units) – Nup. Batting far too low at number seven

Ben Dunk most runs Hurricanes - $4.00 at Luxbet (5 units)  (66 runs – 3rd in team, trailing by 7) Two good starts, still well in contention
Michael Klinger most runs Scorchers - $4.50 at Luxbet (3 units)  (154 runs – 1st overall) Leading competition after masterful hundred. Wish we’d bet five units.
Luke Wright most runs Stars - $4.50 at Luxbet (1 unit) (58 runs – 3rd in team, trailing by 10) – Well in contention
Matthew Wade most runs Renegades - $6.50 at Sportsbet (0.5 units) (49 runs – 3rd in team, trailing by 30) – Needs a big score

Leading Wicket Takers

Jackson Bird - $17 at Sportingbet (1 unit)  (1 wicket) – Disappointing return so far, needs to improve
Cameron Gannon - $23 at Luxbet (0.5 units) (1 wicket) – Only one game so far
Jason Behrendorff - $23 at Sportsbet (0.5 units) (6 wickets – 1st overall) – Leading the competition and looking in awesome form. Big chance
Cameron Boyce - $29 at Luxbet (0.5 units) (2 wickets) – Not a big impact as yet
Patrick Cummins - $21 at Sportsbet (0.4 units) (4 wickets) – Going well and bowling fast!
James Hopes - $81 at Luxbet (0.1 unit) (0 wickets)
Andrew Flintoff - $81 at Luxbet (0.1 unit) (0 wickets)

Ben Laughlin most wickets Strikers - $3.25 at Sportsbet (3 units) (3 wickets – 2nd in team) – Bowling really well but trails Richardson by 2 wickets
Cameron Boyce most wickets Hurricanes - $4.25 at Luxbet (2 units) (2 wickets – 3rd in team) – Trails Hilfy by 2 wickets, so has some work ahead of him
Jackson Bird most wickets Stars - $4.25 at Ladbrokes (2 units) (1 wicket – 2nd in team) – Trails Hastings by 4 wickets so really need to get a bag to have a chance

 

Take note: Any of the tips in this article are simply the author’s opinion, so bet at your own risk and always gamble responsibly.  Also be sure to check out the Before You Bet Twitter Page for all our thoughts in the lead up to bets! Happy punting!

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