After a successful go guessing the starting XIs of the teams last year, I thought I’d give it another go.
Of course, there’s a lot of water to go under the bridge between now and December 20, when the BBL kicks off, so I’ll have an updated version delivered to you shortly.
2. Ludeman (wk)
4. Hodge (c)
Other players: Simmons, Smith, Dean, Stanlake, Weatherald, Carey, Agar
The Adelaide line-up is a tough one to pick, espescially considering two of their most important players Simmons and Ludeman, haven’t played much cricket this year. Neser at 7 brings good balance and allows Pollard to go higher up the order, and depending on the situation, he could drift even higher.
3. Lynn (c)
7. Peirson (wk)
Other players: Swepson, Doolan, Labuschagne, Feldman, Heazlett, Wildermuth, Lalor
There aren’t a lot of quality pace options for the Heat, but their slow bowlers in Floros, Badree and possibly Swepson will be the key for Brisbane this season. The top 6 is impressive though; they can all go big when required.
4. Bailey (c)
6. McDermott (wk)
Other players: Kingston, Rainbird, Tait, Michael, Webster, Bazley, Short
Who opens with Tim Paine? It could be Michael, it could be McDermott. But at this stage I think it makes most sense to open with Dan Christian, who has done it before for the Bushrangers. Pace bowlers are all jostling for a few spots: Broad seems the only lock ahead of Tait, Reed, Rainbird, Milenko and Kingston. There is still one spot Hobart’s roster to fill.
3. Voges (c)
4. Marsh, M
5. Bancroft (wk)
Other players: Whiteman, Cartwright, Coulter-Nile, Marsh S, Muirhead, Behrendorff, Richardson
Bell opens for this county side Warwickshire in limited overs games, and I expect Langer to offer him the same opportunity here. Bancroft will probably take the gloves once again as he offers more with the bat than Whiteman. Turner and Agar are the spin options, and then there’s five very good pace options. Looks like Behrendorff will miss the start of the BBL at least, as will Nathan Coulter-Nile.
5. Hussey (c)
7. Triffitt (wk)
Other players: Gotch, Gulbis, Handscomb, Harper, Hilfenhaus, Quiney, Worrall
Incredibly, the Stars are unchanged from last season. Handscomb might be a notable omission this season due to Australian duties, but it means that Triffitt gets a chance, and he’s been impressive when he’s played. Lots of competition in the bowling department mean that probably only Hastings and Zampa are locks there.
1. Finch (c)
7. Nevill (wk)
Other players: Cooper, Doherty, Pattinson, Siddle, Wade, Walker, Winter
There are a few moving parts in the Renegades’ line-up that are still yet to be settled. Will James Pattinson be available? Will they go with two spinners? Does White retain his successful opening position? Getting the balance right is difficult too, because they are short of good all-rounders, with the exception of Bravo. Don’t want to rely on Finch as the sixth bowler.
2. Haddin (wk)
4. Henriques (c)
Other players: Starc, Hazlewood, Bird, Carters, Dwarshuis, Hughes, Lyon
So many Test players in their squad makes picking the starting XI pretty straight forward. Billings had a pretty good IPL in the middle order and Roy is a blaster from the start. Botha qualifies as a local player and he along with Henriques gives the team a great balance.
3. Morgan (c)
7. Hartley (wk)
Other players: Khawaja, Sandhu, McDermott, Nair, McAndrew, Watson (c), Doran
It’s a different-looking side to the Thunder team that took the title last season, starting with no Hussey or Kallis and Khawaja unlikely to play much. But most of the team is the same, with Russell’s availability still pending. They’ve still got a few spots on their list to fill, so it will be interesting to see who gets drafted in.