It’s a Sunday afternoon clash with massive finals implications as the Thunder and Strikers do battle at the Adelaide Oval. The Thunder sat atop the BBL table for a large portion of the season, but now are facing a battle to qualify for the finals. The Strikers thumped the Heat by 82 runs in their last match, with Travis Head and Michael Nesser’s return from the national squad coming at the perfect time. Who will secure their spot in the top five? See our full preview and betting tips for Sunday afternoon’s clash below.
Big Bash League (BBL10): Thunder vs Strikers Betting Tips
Adelaide Oval, Sunday January 24, 4:05pm
Sydney Thunder Squad: Callum Ferguson, Sam Billings, Jonathan Cook, Ben Cutting, Ollie Davies, Brendan Doggett, Matt Gilkes,Chris Green, Alex Hales, Baxter Holt, Usman Khawaja, Nathan McAndrew, Adam Milne, Arjun Nair, Alex Ross, Jason Sangha, Tanveer Sangha, Chris Tremain
Adelaide Strikers Squad: Travis Head, Alex Carey, Wes Agar, Danny Briggs, Harry Conway, Ryan Gibson, Michael Neser, Harry Nielsen, Liam O’Connor, Spencer Johnson, Matt Renshaw, Phil Salt, Liam Scott, Matt Short, Peter Siddle, Cameron Valente, Jake Weatherald, Jon Wells, Daniel Worrall
The Thunder chose the right time to post the highest total in BBL history, a whopping 5/235 against the top of the table Sixers. Alex Hales smashed 110 off 56 balls to end a three game losing streak that the Thunder were on. The Thunder now just need one win from their last two games against the Strikers, to secure a position in the finals. Whilst they hit a slight form slump recently, the Thunder have proven they’re good enough to finish in the top five.
The Strikers have struggled for consistency, winning just three of their last seven games. The Strikers have changed their batting order up multiple times throughout the season, exemplifying that they themselves aren’t one hundred percent sure what their best order is - that’s a massive concern this late in the tournament. The Thunder have had the wood over the Strikers recently, winning their last three games against Adelaide. Their last two wins against the Strikers came at the Adelaide Oval, including a finals victory last season, showing they can win in high pressure situations on the road.
The Thunder’s batsmen have been very good for the majority of the season. Alex Hales (462 runs), Callum Ferguson (312), Usman Khawja (274), Ben Cutting (222) and Sam Billings (220) have shown they are nearly impossible to stop when they get going. There’s been four scores of over 200 this season, and the Thunder have three of them. With Tanveer Sangha (3rd) and Nathan McAndrew (13th) among the upper echelon in the league with wickets, the Thunder have the depth to take down the Strikers, who have struggled without Rashid Khan.
Thunder Prop Bet
Alex Hales stunning 110 against the Sixers catapulted him to the leading run scorer for the BBL10 season. Hales has scored 462 runs at 38, with a strike rate of 165. Hales is hitting form at the right time of the season, with scores of 54, 29 and 110 in his last three games.
The Strikers look slightly thin with the ball without Rashid Khan, there’s a lot of reliance on Wes Agar and Michael Nesser. Hales will look to target Liam O’Connor and Danny Briggs. Hales scored 59 in a player of the match performance against the Strikers in ‘The Eliminator’ last season at the Adelaide Oval. The experienced Englishman knows how to get the job done when the pressure is, you can expect him to rise to the occasion on Sunday afternoon.
Hales Top THU Runscorer
Strikers Prop Bet
After an incredible season in BBL09 Jon Wells has had a solid BBL10 campaign with 222 runs at an average of 24, showing an excellent ability to utilise the power surge when he is at the crease late in the innings. His versatility is crucial to Strikers as he’s able to adapt any situation the game throws up. With the inconsistency that the Strikers have gone through lately the Strikers will need his experience in such a crucial game.
Wells has an excellent record against the Thunder scoring 115 runs in his last three matches against the Thunder, including knocks of 34, 26 and 55 not out. With the Strikers needing to win to hold their place in the top five, you can expect Wells to perform under the pressure of a must win game.
Wells Top STR Runscorer