The daily Big Bash League preview charges down the wicket with BBL tips for a crunch game between the Brisbane Heat and depleted Hobart Hurricanes.
History: Played 15: Hurricanes 10 V Heat 5
Last meeting: January 3, 2020: Heat d Hurricanes by 31 runs at Blundstone Arena
Final Thoughts: The Brisbane Heat and Hobart Hurricanes square off in their second BBL showdown in the space of six days.
Both teams are in the midtable logjam with 3-3 records – needless to say, this is a pivotal encounter.
The Heat carved out a 31-run in Hobart last Friday. Chris Lynn went off for 88* off 55 balls to steer the visitors to a BBL season-high 3/212. Max Bryant contributed 65 off just 36 deliveries. The Hurricanes replied with 9/181, with George Bailey’s 28 off 14 their modest top-score – one of six Hobart batsmen dismissed in the 20s.
Brisbane won their subsequent rain-shortened match against the Thunder in Sydney by 16 runs. Tom Banton’s blistering 56 off 19 – the second-fastest half-century in BBL history – took the Heat to 4/119 in just eight overs.
The Hurricanes grabbed an eight-run win over the Scorchers in Perth on Sunday. D’Arcy Short’s unbeaten century was the catalyst, while Scott Boland (2/29) was also superb.
But Short is now on international duty in India. It’s a huge loss, particularly with key stars James Faulkner and Riley Meredith currently injured. Test star Matthew Wade is a big inclusion for the Hurricanes, however, while the Heat have Joe Burns available again.
The table-topping Hurricanes won both encounters with the Heat last season, with D’Arcy Short man-of-the-match in each.
Short clubbed 67 off 52 and James Faulkner took 3/25 in a 15-run win on the Gold Coast. Ben Cutting (58 off 32) was the Heat’s standout. Alex Ross’ 62 off 35 for Brisbane went to waste at Blundstone Arena as Short (68* off 41) guided the Hurricanes to a nine-wicket win with more than five overs to spare.
The disruption to the Hurricanes’ squad sees the Heat go in as one of the shortest-priced favourites of the BBL season at $1.53. The in-form Lynn will also be eager to prove he was worthy of an Australian ODI spot. He has averaged over 70 in his past four innings.