Morkel, Tahir & Billings: What this fortnight’s BBL signings means for SuperCoach
There’s been plenty of new signings in the Big Bash League, which can often overwhelm at this time of the pre-season, so here’s an alphabetical club-by-club breakdown of the additions and re-signings from the past fortnight.
Brisbane Heat have added South African quick Morne Morkel ($138k BWL) as a domestic player (given he lives in Australia). He played one game for Perth last season and struggled. It’s hard to figure out his anticipated role, but there’s a spot in the XI for him with James Pattinson and Josh Lalor gone.
Brisbane also signed English all-rounder Lewis Gregory ($175k BAT/BWL) who should be a like-for-like replacement for Ben Cutting. Gregory, however, has been called up by England early in the BBL and likely won’t be available until after Christmas.
The Heat have also re-signed Afghan spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman ($115k BWL) who should be available all season, along with Marnus Labuschagne ($64k BAT/BWL) who may get a few games at the back end. Sadly, AB de Villiers confirmed he won’t be returning this season.
Melbourne Renegades have been busy, confirming the acquisition of enigmatic South African tweaker Imran Tahir ($175k BWL) who’ll be available after Christmas. In the meantime, they’ve signed teenage Afghan spinner Noor Ahmed ($62k BWL).
The Gades roster is almost complete with only one import spot remaining, after further additions Mitch Perry ($42k BWL), Josh Lalor ($134k BWL) and Jack Prestwidge ($93k BWL/BAT). Lalor seems the most likely of those three to play regularly.
Melbourne Stars locked in prodigious talent Will Pucovski ($42k BAT) who has huge wraps but isn’t known as a short-form player. Australia call-ups for Pucovski’s Stars teammates could open the door for him to get a game, which is relevant early as they have a double game round first up.
Sydney Thunder have confirmed their three imports for BBL|10 with English middle-order batsman Sam Billings ($160k WKP/BAT) joining New Zealand quick Adam Milne ($125k BWL) and Hales.
We expect Billings won’t be available until after Christmas due to England duty, but when he is, he’ll likely slot into the number five position after Callum Ferguson and Alex Ross. And he can also keep, which may force Matt Gilkes out.
Milne should be a regular in the Thunder XI, likely taking Chris Tremain’s place in the side. Thunder coach Shane Bond says he’ll be available all tournament too.
Sydney Sixers re-signed James Vince ($98k BAT) who has full availability and likely to open the batting once again this season.