Adelaide Oval plays host to the second Big Bash League semi-final on Friday night, with the Adelaide Strikers and Melbourne Renegades both striving for a historic final berth!
History: Played 7: Strikers 4 V Renegades 3.
Last meeting: January 22, 2018: Strikers d Renegades by 26 runs at Etihad Stadium.
Final Thoughts: Adelaide Strikers finished second on the BBL07 ladder with seven wins and three losses, earning the right to host a semi-final against the 6-4 Melbourne Renegades.
The teams met last week in Melbourne, with Adelaide carving out a 26-run win. Skipper Travis Head put some disappointing ODI form behind him with 58 and Colin Ingram top-scored with 68 as the Strikers reached 5/173, while Brad Hodge was the Renegades’ best batsman with a modest 30* as Billy Stanlake (2/22), Ben Laughlin (2/18) and Rashid Khan (2/26) strangled the hosts out of the match.
But Head and Stanlake have been drafted into Australia’s T20I squad, as has Renegades bowler Kane Richardson. Meanwhile, Hodge is out due to illness but Cameron White returns to the Melbourne squad from ODI duty.
Adelaide’s only match since taking on the Renegades was a four-wicket loss to the table-topping Scorchers, with 56 from Jake Weatherald and 3/20 from Rashid Khan not enough to nab an away victory.
The Renegades come into this showdown on the back of consecutive wins over the Thunder (9 runs) and Heat (26 runs). Marcus Harris (64) and Tom Cooper (65*) top-scored respectively, while Richardson took four wickets in each game and will be sorely missed.
Melbourne has the edge experience-wise, but don’t disregard the effect of a jam-packed Adelaide Oval crowd, while the Strikers’ overall form this season renders them good value as a slight home underdog.