In any fantasy competition, there are the proven performers, the true premiums that you always stick in your side, and you can be sure they will score you a lot of points.
Seeing as you can only have XI players on the field, and there is a limited salary cap, it usually good to try and get at least 2 top batsmen and bowlers, a top all-rounder and wicket-keeper. And if you’ve got the spare cash to add in a couple more, you should definitely go for it.
Aaron Finch (Renegades, $102,500) – He’s the most expensive batsman in the league, but he is also one of the best T20 players in the world. He will open for the Renegades and will play at least the first half of the season while the test matches are being played. His ability to play a big innings is unrivaled in the BBL. A lock for your batting lineup.
Mike Hussey (Thunder, $76,800) – We’re all used to seeing Mike Hussey in the commentary box by now, but he still a very good T20 player, and the Sydney Thunder certainly still need his batting talents. He will bat at the top of the Thunder order again, and he will have some able support around him this season to allow him to build even bigger scores.
Cameron White (Stars, $63,300) – White is quite possibly in the form of his career right now, smashing runs for fun in the Ryobi Cup, and doing quite well in the Sheffield Shield. He will open the batting and may roll his arm over with a few leggies now and then, giving him the chance to take a few wickets too. At only $63k, he is very underpriced and is a bargain premium buy.
Luke Wright (Stars, $103,700) – Wright will partner Cameron White at the top of the Stars’ order, forming an opening partnership which was extremely effective last season. Wright is a limited overs specialist, with the ability to whack a ball out of the MCG, and he can also roll his arm over with some useful pace bowling. He’ll be here for the whole season too, making him a more attractive option than fellow Stars’ all-rounders Maxwell and Faulkner, who will likely be called up for national duties at some stage.
Ben Cutting (Heat, $92,500) – Ben Cutting will most likely bowl 4 overs every match, giving him the chance to pick up some wickets, while also coming in late in the batting order and has the ability to hit balls out of the park straight away. Great pick as an all-rounder for your side.
Ben Dunk (Hurricanes, $105,600) – Player of the tournament for BBL|03, Dunk proved his prowess with the bat last year. With Tim Paine out of form and dropped in Tasmania’s last Sheffield Shield match, Dunk may also be donning the gloves for the Hurricanes, meaning his scores can reach even higher. He is very expensive though, especially for a wicket-keeper, and this is a section of your team where you can look to save a few dollars instead. Still, if you want a proven scorer, Dunk is a man to go with.
Matthew Wade (Renegades, $66,800) – Wade is a good player to go with as you know he will definitely bat up the order, unlike keepers from some other teams. He is also a cheaper option than Ben Dunk, but you can go even cheaper if you want to save money in this section, which is not a bad idea. The likes of Jimmy Pierson, Chris Hartley, Ryan Carters and Tom Triffit are all good to look at under $40k.
Jackson Bird (Stars, $104,900) – Bird was a revelation for the Stars last season, taking plenty of wickets with his nagging fast-medium bowling. He hits the right areas and gets enough movement off the seam to trouble batsmen in every form of the game, and it is very effective at taking wickets in T20 cricket, as well as keeping his economy rate down.
Yasir Arafat (Scorchers, $101,200) – A short form specialist, Arafat was a very strong performer last season for the Scorchers. He will take a lot of wickets for Perth again, so lock him in to your side. He uses expert changes of pace to deceive batsmen. He is a massively experienced cricketer, and you can rely on him to score big for your side.
Cameron Boyce (Hurricanes, $83,700) – Boyce has really developed over the last couple of seasons into a genuine wicket taking bowler. Leg spinners have always been strong in this department, but Boyce’s development has seen him make it to international level and perform very strongly. He will be the Hurricane’s first choice spinner, and he can hold a bat too, so look out for him to have a big impact and score a lot of points this season.