|Finished.164/3 (18.5) - 163/7 (20)|
After beating the Sydney Thunder comfortably in their last match, the Sydney Sixers have well and truly pulled away from the pack. Six points ahead of their most immediate threat, the Sixers are three wins away from being beyond the reach of the rest. Confident, they will now face the Perth Scorchers, who have a strong chance of superseding the Thunder to become a stronger threat. Since their defeat to the Adelaide Strikers back in Match 17, the Scorchers seem to have attached a jetpack to themselves. Winning every match since then comfortably, they have already trounced the Sixers once. If they can repeat that feat, they will be in second place - a far cry from the last place they were in just a few weeks ago. Before this important battle begins, let’s take a look at the two teams.
Sydney Sixers predicted XI, preview, form, and key players
Predicted XI: Daniel Hughes (c), Josh Philippe (wk), Justin Avendano, James Vince, Jordan Silk, Lloyd Pope, Carlos Brathwaite, Daniel Christian, Steve O'Keefe, Jackson Bird, Jason Holder.
If you’re in the top spot of a league, you want to make sure you’ve got a bit of a cushion between you and the team/person in second place. With their latest effort, the Sixers have managed just that. However, Hughes’ men aren’t out of the woods yet, as it will still take a string of wins for them to make finishing at that spot a concrete reality. In their last match, the Sixers chose to field first - and to decent effect. Steve O’Keefe was the standout bowler with 3 for 15, but Jackson Bird also kept things economical to keep Thunder’s score within range. Rain then delayed the game and changed the target to 129 off 14 overs. Next, it was Josh Philippe’s turn to shine as the current Orange Cap holder smashed his way to a solid 64 to propel his team to victory.
SS Key players
Josh Philippe: The Sixers wicket keeper is a gem of a batsman, and has been the architect of many a victory for his team.
Daniel Christian: The explosive all-rounder hasn’t been dismissed in the last two matches, and when he gets going he makes quite a difference in the game.
Lloyd Pope: Young Pope will be important with the ball given the Manuka Oval’s turning pitch.
Steve O’Keefe: O’Keefe was once again the player of the match in the last game, and his skills will be just as useful this time around.
Perth Scorchers predicted XI, preview, form, and key players
Predicted XI: Ashton Turner (c), Joe Clarke, Jason Roy, Jason Behrendorff, Fawad Ahmed, Aaron Hardie, Josh Inglis (wk), Liam Livingstone, Cameron Bancroft, Jhye Richardson, Andrew Tye.
The Scorchers’ comeback has been phenomenal, and if they somehow manage to take the top spot, it will be the stuff of legend. With Mitchell Marsh unable to bowl due to an injury, though, that might be difficult. In their last match, the scorchers bowled first to the Hobart Hurricanes, and they did so superbly. Although only Aaron Hardie picked up more than one wicket, the others kept things extremely economical, and the Hurricanes were only able to get to a tepid 139. On the chase, the Scorchers showed their class as Jason Roy’s 74 and Liam Livingstone’s 54 marched them to victory with 9 wickets and 3.4 overs to spare, with the difference highlighting the power of the Scorchers’ bowling attack.
PS Key players
Jason Roy: Coming up with a big knock at last, Roy proved that he can be one of the deadliest batsmen at this year’s BBL.
Joe Clarke: A possible replacement for Mitchell Marsh, Clarke is a potent hitter who might make the best of his chance.
Jhye Richardson: This young talent has been dominating with the ball, and it’s impossible not to put him here.
Fawad Ahmed: Another fast bowler who’s been excellent, and has the power to make life difficult for any batsman.
SS vs PS weather and pitch conditions
The morning should start off very cold, but the temperature will rise to a more pleasant level as the day gets older. With low humidity, a nice breeze, and few clouds in the sky, it should be a great day for cricket.
As we have mentioned before, the Manuka Oval offers plenty for spinners. Considering the fact that the Scorchers have no full-time spinners, their fast bowlers will have to find lateral movement to make the best of the pitch while the Sixers’ spinners will no doubt love the surface. Any first innings score above 160 will be a solid bet for the defending team.
Can the Sixers get further away from their competition? Or will the Scorchers overwhelm them as they’ve been doing with others? Find out if our Sydney Sixers versus Perth Scorchers predictions come true on Friday!
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|Players to score a fifty:|
|J Philippe/D Christian (SS), J Roy/J Clarke (PS)|