This week’s Monday night BBL12 action features two title favourites, with the Hobart Hurricanes hosting the Perth Scorchers.

Despite fielding an understrength line-up, Perth got their campaign off to a strong start against the Sixers, while the Hurricanes were left to lament a poor showing at the MCG.

Draftstars have put up a huge $25,000 contest for this one, as well as some Tuesday Qualifier contests to suit every budget.


Hurricanes Squad: Asif Ali (PAK), Tim David, Paddy Dooley, Nathan Ellis, Caleb Jewell, Shadab Khan (PAK), Ben McDermott, Riley Meredith, Joel Paris, D’Arcy Short, Billy Stanlake, Chris Tremain, Matthew Wade, Jimmy Neesham (NZ)

Scorchers Squad: Ashton Agar, Cameron Bancroft, Jason Behrendorff, Cooper Connolly, Cameron Green, Aaron Hardie, Peter Hatzoglou, Nick Hobson, Josh Inglis, Matt Kelly, Lance Morris, Jhye Richardson, Ashton Turner, Andrew Tye, Faf du Plessis (SA)

In the lead up to Round 1, the Hurricanes catapulted into title favouritism off the back of strong drafting and misfortune hitting rivals.

Therefore, it came as a shock when the unfancied Melbourne Stars beat Hobart to the tune of 38 runs on Friday evening.

Despite quality spells from spinners Paddy Dooley and Shadab Khan, an unbeaten century from Englishman Joe Clarke ensured that the Stars put 183 on the board. In reply, an imposing Hurricanes batting line-up never got going.

Australian representatives Matthew Wade (35 off 35) and Tim David (24 off 17) did their best to give the men in purple a chance, but ultimately it was not to be.

If the Hurricanes are to get their title hunt back on track, a win against Perth tonight is at the top of their Christmas wish list.

On the other hand, reigning champions Perth showed a huge amount of ticker to bank full points in their first game, a BBL11 Final rematch.

All-rounder Aaron Hardie (55 off 32) guided the Scorchers to a respectable score of 155, before the bowlers did the damage. All of Perth’s top-drawer bowlers took a wicket, but Jhye Richardson was the standout, earning Player of the Match honours with a scintillating spell of 4-9.

Given the absence of Mitch Marsh, Phil Salt and Laurie Evans, Perth will be hoping their bowlers can continue in the same fashion against Hobart and beyond.


Hurricanes vs Scorchers Fantasy Plays

Love It – Billy Stanlake ($8,800)

IF Stanlake plays, he is great value selection. Added to the squad after completing his recovery from injury, big Billy brings experience to the Hurricanes with 47 BBL wickets. We all know that Stanlake is capable of bowling 150km/h, and raw speed seems to be a wicket-taking strategy so far this season, so expect points from this man if he gets a chance.

Love It – Matthew Wade ($17,100)

Batting at 3, Wade put in the best shift of the Hurricanes batsmen in a disappointing outing last start. Returning home to UTAS Stadium in Tasmania, I can see the experienced hitter outperforming his more hyped teammates tonight, especially as he doesn’t have to face new ball specialists Behrendorff and Richardson.

Don’t Love It – D’Arcy Short ($19,200)

Short was in the ‘Who Knows’ category last start, but after getting a glimpse at his role against the Stars I’m no longer interested in rostering him. Hobart’s decision to play Khan and Dooley meant that Short wasn’t required with the ball, so if that continues he has to score big runs to justify this price tag. We haven’t seen Short’s best with the bat for a while, so it’s a fade from me.

Don’t Love It – James Neesham ($13,900)

Like Short, Neesham was utilised purely as a middle-order batsman on Friday, giving him little opportunity to star. The Hurricanes have plentiful stock when it comes to seam bowlers, so I can’t see the Kiwi getting a look in with the ball any time soon. At nearly $14k, you’ll need another Hobart collapse for Neesham to make an impact at 7.

Who Knows – Aaron Hardie ($12,600)

Hardie was the surprise packet of Round 1, managing 118.5 points with a sensational knock against the Sixers. Given the Scorchers don’t have the best batting line-up, I expect Hardie to get more chances to impress, although his scoring could be further boosted by some overs with the ball which are always a possibility.

Draftstars Suggested Lineup

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