Round 5 BBL line-ups predicted and explained from a SuperCoach perspective
Round 4 is done and we’re straight in Round 5 on Thursday with no doubles or byes, so to help you navigate your way we’ve assessed the likely XIs this round.
Adelaide Strikers v Brisbane Heat – Thursday @ Adelaide Oval
The Strikers put up a good fight against the Sixers and will likely go into Thursday’s game unchanged. Youngster Tom Kelly reinforced his spot in the side with a handy 41, meaning Henry Hunt will likely need to wait for a chance. Wes Agar may be considered to replace Dan Worrall, after two games without a wicket, but Fawad Ahmed seems locked in after a strong spell in Sydney.
Probable Ins: None
Probable Outs: None
Unavailable: A.Carey (Ashes), T.Head (Ashes), R.Gibson (inj)
6 H.Nielsen (wk)
8 Rashid Khan
11 Fawad Ahmed
The Heat will be forced into two changes with Mitch Swepson unavailable with Australia’s Boxing Day Test squad and English import Tom Abell injured. Tom Cooper came in as X-factor for Abell and was a shining light with the bat, so he’ll likely replace him in the XI. Either all-rounder Jack Wildermuth or Liam Guthrie will likely replace Swepson, with the former offering more with the bat, which is what Brisbane need, although he’s not yet been declared 100% fit after a back issue.
Opener Max Bryant isn’t secure either after 27 runs in four games and the Heat may consider dropping him, elevating Sam Heazlett and giving Nathan McSweeney, who plays his state cricket in SA nowadays, a chance in the middle order.
Probable Ins: J.Wildermuth, T.Cooper
Probable Outs: M.Swepson, T.Abell
Doubtful: J.Wildermuth (inj)
Unavailable: M.Labuschagne (Ashes), C.Sully (inj), M.Willans (inj), M.Neser (Ashes), M.Swepson (Ashes), T.Abell (inj)
6 J.Peirson (wk)
11 Mujeeb Ur Rahman
Hobart Hurricanes v Melbourne Stars – Friday @ Blundstone Arena
The Hurricanes have had a tough run of fixtures but will look to build some continuity now. Riley Meredith should play a full game after starting, bowling one over and being X-factored out last game following a hamstring injury. That’ll impact their attack. Jordan Thompson impressed as X-factor with three wickets and a run out last game and should come in to replace spinner Wil Parker who only bowled one over and went for 18 runs.
The Canes have scored 130 or less on three occasions this season, so they may mix up their batting line-up, with Peter Handscomb in contention to return. English import Harry Brook has struggled so far but has only had two games, while Caleb Jewell could make way despite a bright start to the season. Ben McDermott should return to first drop.
Probable Ins: J.Thompson
Probable Outs: W.Parker
Unavailable: J.Paris (inj), S.Boland (Ashes)
1 M.Wade (wk)
11 Sandeep Lamichhane
The Stars will be without spinner Adam Zampa for this game, with left-arm wrist-spinning all-rounder Clint Hinchliffe or Tasmanian left-arm paceman Sam Rainbird his probable replacement. Joe Burns may be available for selection after injury, with Beau Webster’s spot not secure. The Stars appear set to back in struggling English opener Joe Clarke, while Andre Russell has two games left, with Haris Rauf flying in this week.
Probable In: C.Hinchliffe
Probable Out: A.Zampa
Doubtful: J.Burns (inj)
Unavailable: B.Stanlake (inj), S.Gotch (inj), L.Hatcher (inj)
2 J.Clarke (wk)
10 Qais Ahmad
Sydney Thunder v Sydney Sixers – Sunday @ Sydney Showground
The Thunder will likely go unchanged after a commanding win over the Heat, where they dominated with bat and ball. Jason Sangha filled in for Sam Whiteman – who missed the game out of caution after a COVID-19 scare – impressively, with 39 off 28 and probably holds.
Probable In: None
Probable Out: None
Unavailable: B.Doggett (inj), O.Davies (inj), U.Khawaja (Ashes)
4 S.Billings (wk)
The Sixers will be without Chris Jordan whose five-game BBL stint is over. It’s uncertain who the Sixers – who have been linked with Pakistani spinner Shadab Khan – will prefer to replace him for this game, but Nick Winter feels next in line. New spinner Todd Murphy may be considered too. Dan Hughes has struggled with the bat but should hold for now.
Probable Ins: N.Winter
Probable Outs: C.Jordan
Unavailable: J.Bird (inj), N.Lyon (Ashes), B.Manenti (inj), T.Curran (inj), S.O’Keefe (inj), C.Jordan (stint over)
1 J.Philippe (wk)
Perth Scorchers v Melbourne Renegades – Sunday @ Marvel Stadium
The Scorchers are 5-0 and flying despite no home games. They’ll likely be unchanged from the side that beat the Renegades on Wednesday, although in-form opener Kurtis Patterson is a small chance to return from quad tightness although they’ll likely be cautious with his return given his injury history and Cameron Bancroft ably covered. Lance Morris has returned to fitness and linked up with the squad in Victoria but is well down the pecking order.
Probable Ins: None
Probable: Outs: None
Unavailable: C.Connolly (U19 World Cup), J.Richardson (Ashes), K.Patterson (inj)
4 J.Inglis (wk)
The Gades put up a good fight with the bat against the Scorchers on Wednesday so don’t expect any changes to that part of their line-up. Jake Fraser-McGurk was scratchy with 30 off 24 but did enough to hold his spot, leaving James Seymour out of the XI. The Gades may consider changes to their attack after leaking 200+ runs, with import Reece Topley especially struggling on Wednesday. Experienced left-arm quick Josh Lalor may be considered.
Probable Ins: None
Probable Outs: None
Unavailable: M.Harris (Ashes), S.Marsh (inj), C.Boyce (inj)
4 S.Harper (wk)
6 Mohammad Nabi
11 Zahir Khan