BBL 7, Match 28, Preview: Bottom placed Sixers face misfiring Thunder

None of the two Sydney based teams has been able to perform as well as they would have liked in the 7th edition of the Big Bash League (BBL) so far.

Sydney Sixers
Sydney Sixers. (Photo by Stefan Gosatti/Getty Images)

None of the two Sydney based teams has been able to perform as well as they would have liked in the 7th edition of the Big Bash League (BBL) so far, but the Thunder have been slightly better in comparison and have still kept themselves in the race to the semi-finals. The Sydney Sixers, on the contrary, have lost 6 back to back matches and need a miracle from here on to make it to the top 4.

To make matters worse for the Sixers, Jason Roy one of their explosive players at the top of the order will not be available for this game. He is on national duty now. Roy might not have been in the greatest of forms of late, but he is one of those players who is capable of making a match-winning impact on his day. So his departure is definitely a blow for the Sixers, but they can now slot in the West Indies skipper Carlos Brathwaite as the second overseas player in the XI.

Brathwaite is quite a useful all-rounder in the shortest format of the game. He is definitely not one of the quickest in the business, but he has got a good height and strong shoulders and he hits the deck fairly hard. Batting wise too, he brings a lot to the table as he is a lusty hitter down the order. Who can forget the way he had finished the World T20 final in 2016 by hitting 4 consecutive sixes off the bowling of Ben Stokes to see Windies home? He will definitely be a good addition to the Sixers.

The Thunder, on the other hand, would be mighty pleased that Usman Khawaja has carried his Test form into white ball cricket. The left-hander filled the big void created by Jos Buttler’s absence the other night and played a scintillating knock of 85 runs off just 51 balls against the Scorchers.

However, the biggest worry for Shane Watson as skipper will be the bowling form of Mitchell McClenaghan. The Kiwi left-arm quick again proved to be very expensive in the last game and went for more than 50 runs in his 4 overs. He, however, got his lengths right on the last couple of deliveries of the game to make sure the Scorchers didn’t go over the line, but his overall figures were not impressive at all. The 31-year-old will be keen to put up a better show in this crunch game.

Predicted XI-

Sydney Thunder squad: Shane Watson (C), Fawad Ahmed, Callum Ferguson, Andrew Fekete, Chris Green, Jay Lenton, Usman Khawaja, Arjun Nair, Mitch McClenaghan, Kurtis Patterson, Ben Rohrer, Gurinder Sandhu, James Vince

Sydney Sixers Squad: Johan Botha (C), Sean Abbott, Jackson Bird, Carlos Brathwaite, Joe Denly, Ben Dwarshuis, Moises Henriques, Daniel Hughes, Nathan Lyon, Nic Maddinson, Peter Nevill, Daniel Sams, Jordan Silk