We head back to Blundstone Arena as the Hurricanes and Stars do battle again following an upset win to the home side on Saturday Night. The Stars arguably threw the match away with some poor decisions at a crucial time in their run chase and will be looking to get their season back on track here.
Hobart performed well with both the bat and ball on Saturday night, and deservedly came out with the win, while the Stars lacked composure and discipline just when they were looking to get on top. The Canes can thank star recruit Dawid Malan, who belted 75 off 56 balls and the death bowling of Scott Boland (3-22) and Nathan Ellis (2-11) who got them over the line as the Stars were gaining momentum.
The win moved the Hurricanes to outright 2nd on the BBL ladder and they have now won 5 of 7 matches this season. They are only a single bonus point behind ladder leaders the Sydney Thunder (before yesterday's games) and can look to move ahead of them here this afternoon.
Melbourne are in a worrying slump of form and have now lost 3 matches in a row, dropping them to 5th on the ladder. Every match begins to become more important at this stage and the pressure will be on for their star studded roster to pick themselves up and regain the early season form they showed.
Hurricanes Squad: Scott Boland, Jake Doran, Nathan Ellis, James Faulkner, Peter Handscomb, Ben McDermott, Riley Meredith, David Moody, D Arcy Short, Macalister Wright, Wil Parker, Dawid Malan, Colin Ingram, Mitchell Owen, Will Jacks, Keemo Paul, Sandeep Lamichhane, Nick Winter, Tim David, Jarrod Freeman
Stars Squad: Glenn Maxwell (c), Hilton Cartwright, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Ben Dunk, Seb Gotch, Clint Hinchliffe, Nic Maddinson, Jonathan Merlo, Lance Morris, Tom O Connell, Will Pucovski, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis, Adam Zampa, Nicholas Pooran, Jonny Bairstow, Zahir Khan, Jackson Coleman, Nick Larkin
I’ll admit I was quite confident the Stars couldn’t lose three in a row in our last preview, so while they looked on track midway through their innings, they couldn’t get the job done for us. With teams playing back-to-back against each other this season it becomes hard to assess and decide which way to swing.
Believe it or not but I’m going to give the Stars another chance here this afternoon. While they lost on Saturday, they were in a winning position with only 9 or so overs to go until a poor batting collapse cost them. A few poor decisions were made in crucial stages and resulted in the Canes coming out with the win. I think the Stars can fix up those errors and turn the tables on the home side. Maxwell was at his dominant best on Saturday night as he took down all the Hobart bowlers on his way to 70 off 37 balls and will be looking for some support to get his team over the line this afternoon. Our man Marcus Stoinis unfortunately let us down again but if he can turn around his form I think that will be a massive factor in the Stars coming out with the win.
The Stars’ bowlers were okay without being great and still managed to restrict Hobart to an achievable total which gives me confidence they can shut them down this afternoon. A better bowling performance will put the pressure on Hobart and the Stars batsmen will do the rest.
Going to side with the in-form batsman of the team in Dawid Malan. The English star import has hit the ground running since he’s arrived for the Big Bash and has added some much needed fire power to the ‘Canes batting lineup.
Malan has top scored in 2 of the 3 matches he has played in so far this tournament and played as good an innings as we’ve seen in BBL10 on Saturday Night. He clearly had no troubles against the Stars’ attack and looks a big chance to continue his form here. With Short and McDermott looking unsure at the top of the order, Malan will get his chance to pile on the runs.
Well what do we do here? I can’t bring myself to tip Marcus Stoinis again and we probably have to just concede he is in poor form at the moment. So where do we look?
Glenn Maxwell has been in flying form this tournament and has been piling on the runs for his side. The skipper almost single handedly led his side to victory the other night and a repeat of that performance is probably going to be needed again against a strong Hobart team.
The Stars’ skipper sits near the top of the BBL10 runs charts with 249 runs across their 6 matches so far. He’s been the best player in the competition and is going to be keen to snap his side’s losing streak. With Stoinis struggling for runs at the moment, the pressure has been placed on Maxwell and he has been answering the call so far. Let’s hope we’re on the right side of this one.
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