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BBL09 Fantasy Tips: Hurricanes vs Stars
The BBL action returns to Launceston’s UTAS Stadium on Monday night when the 2-1 Hobart Hurricanes take on the 2-1 Melbourne Stars.
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Historically, UTAS Stadium has been a tough batting deck with an average runs per innings of just 138.5 in 3 BBL games. We did see some life in this pitch in January as the Strikers comfortably chased the Hurricanes 169 total. However, this matchup will see two very decent bowling lineups face-off, especially with both sides playing two frontline spinners. It will be 34 degrees on Monday in Launceston and will be around 27 during game-time. So that could help batting conditions this time around.
Hobart comes into this home game on the back of a good overall team performance over the Renegades in Hobart. Faulker, Ellis and Meredith all picked up 3 wickets as the home side restricted the ‘Gades to 147. In pursuit of the total, Short was at his best once again in Hobart (60 off 45) and McDermott played a perfect captain's knock with 51 not out. It was also great to see David Miller in the runs with 25 not out. Their biggest weakness is finding batting options outside of Short/McDermott/Miller. They moved Milenko into the opening role and that failed miserably after his 6 ball duck. But their bowling lineup is looking very strong with a number of wicket-takers that can trouble the Stars batting lineup. Especially with Riley Meredith in great form after taking 3 wickets in 2 straight games, which includes 3-27 against the Stars in Moe last week.
The Stars will be eager to get back on the park after a close loss to the undefeated Strikers on Friday night. Their biggest challenge at the moment is trying to find a winning lineup after adding the likes of Steyn and Coulter-Nile. It’s fair to say, Steyn looked a bit underdone against the Strikers after a 20 run first over. But like a true champion, he did peg them back in his next 2 overs. So his bowling will be important against Short in the powerplay. Their spin duo of Zampa and Lamichhane continues to excel in terms of run-rate. While in the batting, they’ll need to figure out the number 3 position after switching between Cartright and Dunk. But the likes of Stoinis and Maxwell are the real keys to this batting lineup. Stoinis is playing the anchor role at the top of the innings, highlighted by his 81 not out against the Hurricanes last week. Handscomb could be an interesting option in the middle order after his solid 34 on the Gold Coast and he usually comes with low ownership.
Melbourne is fairly clear favourites in this encounter after recently defeating the Hurricanes by 52 runs in Moe. They’ve won the last 2 meetings and hold an 8-4 advantage in the head to head since 2010. But this is a key home game for the Hurricanes in their search for a top 4 finish and they’ll be keen to avenge the last 2 defeats against them.
Love it – James Faulkner ($15,800 Draftstars)
If you’re looking for consistency, Faulkner is the man for the job after back to back games of around 70 points on Draftstars. He’s taken 5 wickets in 2 games thus far and as an added bonus, he can still be played as a batsman. So it’s a nice option if you’re stacking a team with bowlers on this usually slow pitch.
Don’t Love it – Caleb Jewell ($11,400 Draftstars)
The fact that Jewell was dropped from his opening position against the Renegades for Milenko shows how much confidence the ‘Canes have him. This was despite scoring 25 off 21 in this previous innings as well. But I don’t think he’ll score many runs against this Stars bowling lineup so he’ll be a safe no play when you can choose similarly priced options in Ellis/Cartwright/Maddinson.
Who Knows? – David Miller ($16,500 Draftstars)
Miller has been pretty disappointing in Fantasy circles after 3 games. But he showed why the Hurricanes signed him with 25 off 15 and 2 sixes on Tuesday. The Hurricanes top-order batting outside of Short and McDermott is unreliable so hopefully, Miller can spend more time at the crease if early wickets fall and produce a nice score over 50 points.
Love it – Riley Meredith ($16,000 Draftstars)
There’s still no significant price rise for the consistent Riley Meredith, which basically means we can lock and load him again. He took another 3fa against the Renegades on Tuesday and has a total of 7 wickets in 3 BBL games this season. In 4 games against the Stars, he has 7 total wickets as well. So with a safe floor of 67 points and a ceiling of 112, back Riley to be your safe bowling option once again.
Don’t Love it – Dale Steyn ($17,000 Draftstars)
No doubt about it, Dale Steyn is a legend of the game but in terms of BBL Fantasy, he’s simply too expensive at this stage. Jake Weatherald made him pay for a loose 1st over on the Gold Coast and he’ll face another tough matchup against D’Arcy Short, who should enjoy his pace on a usually slow batting deck. So his $17k price tag on Draftstars is pretty risky when you can select Coulter-Nile’s batting/bowling ability at a slightly cheaper price.
Who Knows? – Nathan Ellis ($11,500 Draftstars)
Huge game by Nathan Ellis against the Renegades where he ripped through their lower order, taking 3 for 15 off 3 overs. This is a tougher matchup as the Stars possess some quality death overs hitting such as Coulter-Nile, Maxwell and Handscomb. So if Ellis doesn’t take wickets, his scoring potential is risky. But the fact that he can be slotted in as a BAT as well makes him worth the risk to fit in premiums.