BBL News This Week: Heat adds final import, Stoinis returns from injury

The Brisbane Heat completed their full compliment of overseas signings by adding an English import, while Marcus Stoinis returned from injury and Travis Head leads the line in our form guide.

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SIGNINGS

The Brisbane Heat announced the signing of Tom Abell ($125k est, BAT) from Somerset, bolstering their batting options.

The 27-year-old, who has never represented England, scored 295 runs in the English Vitality Blast with four half-centuries from six games, averaging 59 with a strike rate of 161.2. He only played one game in The Hundred after a hamstring injury. He does bowl some right-arm medium although not much.

Heat coach Wade Seccombe said: “[He’s] a resilient, talented & hungry player who is also an excellent team man and leader. Tom has worked hard to improve his T20 game and has certainly blossomed in the past few seasons.”

Abell was part of the English Lions side that toured Australia earlier last year although he struggled making 13 runs from four knocks. He may be part of the Lions side that plays Australia A from December 9-12, so watch this space.

Abell joins Ben Duckett ($125k BAT/WKP) and Mujeeb Ur Rahman ($208k BWL) as the Heat’s imports for BBL|11. Abell and Duckett will likely bat in Brisbane’s top five.

RE-SIGNINGS

The Strikers re-signed Matt Short ($62k BAT) to add depth to their middle order options. Check out all the updated squads and ins/outs.

INTERNATIONAL CALL-UPS

English pair Tom Abell ($125k est, BAT) and Saqib Mahmood ($125k BWL) were named in the England Lions squad to tour Australia from November and to support the Ashes squad. That means both will miss the early BBL rounds, with intra-squad matches and then a tour match against Australia A from December 9-12.

You may also be hoping they don’t go too well, with ECB performance director Mo Babat indicating they may be called upon to join the Ashes squad if injury depletes their squad. Bobat said: If anything was required from an England perspective we’re going to have to use the resources around us. That might be extra players from the Lions, players hanging around from the Big Bash.”

**Our annual Honeyball BBL digital magazine will be out next month, with interviews with experts including last year’s SuperCoach BBL winner, as well as fixture analysis, form guides, international info, player profiles and much much more. Register your interest for a copy via this link.

INJURIES

Marcus Stoinis ($163k BAT/BWL) returned from a hamstring injury in the IPL for the Delhi Capitals making 18 from 23 balls but crucially did not bowl. Hopefully he’s fully fit by the time BBL starts.

Stars BBL|10 signing Will Pucovski sadly suffered another concussion at Victoria training last week and is currently managing his recovery in consultation with Cricket Victoria’s medical staff.

FORM GUIDE

Travis Head ($151k BAT/BWL) grabbed the headlines in the Marsh Cup with a stunning knock of 230 from 127 balls, although he’ll likely be part of the Ashes Test squad and be unavailable for most of BBL.

Strikers bat Jake Weatherald ($133k BAT) smashed 97 from 103 balls, while Heat bat Sam Heazlett ($97k BAT) blazed 93 from 59.

Check out our full form guide for all players.

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