Five bargains you must consider for your SuperCoach BBL starting side
Good SuperCoaches know the importance of utilizing your salary cap shrewdly and there does seem to be plenty of value on offer this season, so we’ve cherry picked a handful of the best.
Aaron Finch $62k BAT – Melbourne Renegades
Put simply, the Aussie T20 and ODI skipper needs to be in Round 1 team. The real question is if he’s on your bench for a look and for cash gen, or on your field for points in Round 1. It’s crazy to think, given his pedigree, that he’s at rookie price. Finch averaged 64.6 SC BBL points in 2019-20 and a few years back 86.9 (2016-17). Make no mistake, last season was a disaster for Finch, managing only 179 runs from 13 knocks, equating to a SC BBL average of 17.6, but there’s a very long time between BBL campaigns and he’s shown enough at the T20 World Cup (130 runs at 26.00 with a strike rate of 120.37) to indicate he’s moved on from last season’s struggles. He’ll bat in the Gades’ top three, won’t be impacted by national call-ups and is dirt cheap. Lock.
Ollie Davies $74k BAT – Sydney Thunder
The highly-rated 21-year-old batsman looms as the logical choice to replace the departed Callum Ferguson at number three for the Thunder this season, which is an excellent SC BBL role. The Australia Under-19 international starred batting at four in his first two games for the Thunder last season, blazing 36 from 22 and 48 from 23, equating to SC BBL scores of 71 and 83 respectively. That’s the potential. Sadly, opposition sides seemed to work him out and he only managed six more runs from his other five innings, so that’s a big flag. But with 12 months development, an improved role and hopefully some runs in the Marsh Cup with NSW, he’s got to be on your radar.
Joel Paris $62k BWL – Hobart Hurricanes
When the Hurricanes landed Paris from the Scorchers, coach Adam Griffith hinted he may be considered for their all-rounder role, batting at seven and bowling 3-4 overs, vacated by the departed James Faulkner. The left-arm fast bowler, who would be used up front with his ability to swing the ball, is a two-time Australia ODI rep who has been let down by his body in recent years and fell down the bowling pecking order at the stacked Scorchers line-up. His early Shield form (11 wickets in three games and 98 runs at 24.5) indicates he’s fully fit and firing right now. There may be more overs for him to bowl with Canes team-mate Scott Boland in the mix for an Australia A call-up too. Keep tabs on Hobart’s final import signing, but it seems he’s firmly in contention for their Round 1 side.
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Matt Willans $42k BWL – Brisbane Heat
This is an early call. And it may be one we retract. But by process of elimination, 20-year-old 205cm left-arm quick could be in the Heat line-up come their Round 1 double, with fellow bowlers Mark Steketee, Michael Neser and Mitch Swepson all set to earn call-ups to the Australia camp, ruling them out of the first three SuperCoach BBL rounds. If that occurs, he’s a prime cash cow. But despite the Steven Bradbury-like situation, we’re not fully convinced he’ll be there, given he’s been overlooked for Queensland selection in the Marsh Cup, with quicks Connor Sully, Blake Edwards and Gurinder Sandhu instead preferred. He is raw and currently fit, taking 14 wickets in nine Premier Cricket games, so monitor this one.
Matthew Renshaw $67k BAT/BWL – Adelaide Strikers
The 11-time Test batsman had a lean BBL|10 campaign batting in a lower-middle order role, making 207 runs with an average of 15.92 and a low strike rate 107.25. Despite his DPP status, he also only bowled six overs, thus averaging only 21.6 in SC BBL. All that is quite off-putting but there is a counter case to consider Renshaw, largely given he should get an improved role with English opener Phil Salt not returning to Adelaide this season and top-order bats Travis Head and Alex Carey set to miss the opening few rounds at least. Suddenly, Renshaw could be required again in the top three, given the Strikers’ shallow batting depth. Don’t forget he averaged 47.9 SC BBL points in 2019-20.
Monitor Jack Edwards ($76k BAT) with a role set to open up for him in the Sixers’ top order, pending Moises Henriques’ national selection. Edwards only averaged 24.3 SC BBL points last season, but has potential and is on a Round 1 double.
Liam Scott ($62k BAT/BWL) started the SA Premier Cricket season strongly with back-to-back centuries and a few wickets and could be considered in a depleted Strikers side, while Thunder gloveman Matt Gilkes ($62k WKP/BAT) may be in contention given his side’s weakened batting line-up, especially if Usman Khawaja gets a national call. There may be two top-four batting positions open at the Thunder (with Ferguson gone) and Gilkes has been opening for NSW in the Shield, so monitor this.
BBL clubs will sign replacement players (for players who are injured or called into the national side) so expect a lot of additional $42k-$62k options closer to the start of the season. Whether those replacement players will actually play is a question we’ll address closer to the start of Round 1.