The Big Bash League preview charges down the wicket with BBL tips as Sydney Sixers and Perth Scorchers meet in a mouth-watering BBL|10 Final.
History: Played 19: Scorchers 11 V Sixers 8
Last meeting: January 30, 2021: Sixers d Scorchers by 9 wickets
Final Thoughts: The BBL|10 Final sees Perth Scorchers shooting for their fourth Big Bash title. The table-topping, defending champion Sydney Sixers looking to join the Scorchers as the only teams to win three BBL crowns. It’s the teams’ fourth Final showdown, with the ledger 2-1 in the Scorchers’ favour.
The Sixers take a major psychological edge into the decider after their nine-wicket thrashing of the Scorchers in last Saturday’s Qualifier.
Josh Inglis smashed an unbeaten 69 off 41 balls as the Scorchers reached 6/167. Carlos Braithwaite (1/25) was the pick of the Sixers bowlers.
But after a quick start from Josh Philippe (45 off 28), James Vince (98* off 53) crushed the Scorchers’ attack as the Sixers reached the target with three overs to spare. Every Perth bowler was carted for at least eight an over.
Scorchers bounce back despite Roy blow
The Scorchers secured another shot at the Sixers with a convincing win over the in-form Heat in Thursday’s Challenger. Rocked by Jason Roy’s injury withdrawal, the Scorchers powered ahead courtesy of a masterful Liam Livingstone knock (77 off 39). Roy’s opener replacement Cameron Bancroft (58* off 42) and Mitch Marsh (49* off 28) saw them through to 1/189 off 18.1 overs before rain prematurely ended their innings.
Andre Tye (2/25), Fawad Ahmed (2/26) and Jason Behrendorff (2/19) were all superb with the ball as the Heat limped to 9/150. An expensive Aaron Hardie claimed three wickets.
The week-long layoff may be a concern for the Sixers momentum-wise. But they won last season’s Final against the Stars after defeating the same opponent in the Qualifier and earning a rest. Meanwhile, the powerhouse Roy is in serious doubt for the Scorchers – but Bancroft’s stand-in showing was comforting.
Both teams grabbed a home win over the other during the BBL|10 regular season.
The Scorchers demolished the Sixers by 86 runs in Perth. Marsh (57* off 27) and Colin Munro (50 off 34) steered the home side to 4/183, before Tye (4/20) and Jhye Richardson (3/15) combined to skittle the Sixers for just 97.
But the Sixers responded 10 days later in Canberra, beating the Scorchers by seven wickets. Livingstone (67 off 38) guided the visitors to 7/163. But a brilliant 84 off 52 from Philippe and a Vince half-century saw the visitors home with seven balls to spare.
Big hitters look to step up on big stage
Philippe – second in the BBL’s run charts with 499 at 33.26 – was named the player of the tournament. Vince (442 at 34) climbed the standings after last weekend’s bonanza, while Jordan Silk (365 at 36.50) and Daniel Hughes (318 at 26.50) have had big campaigns.
Colin Munro has been superb for the Scorchers, smashing four half-centuries to rack up 441 runs at 33.92. Inglis (391 at 35.54) and Livingstone (381 at 29.30) have been Perth’s next-most prolific batsmen.
It’s been feast of famine for Marsh, but he shapes as the Scorchers’ key man. In his last seven innings, he has three unbeaten scores of 49 or more and four scores of 15 or less.
It promises to be one hell of a climax to the BBL|10 season. But the Sixers’ edge in consistency and the SCG factor tips the scales in their favour.