|Finished.153/4 (19.1) vs 150/10 (19.5)|
In the first Melbourne derby this year, we have a team that has recently rejuvenated their qualification hopes versus a team that is on the brink of losing that hope for good. With their recent win, the Melbourne Stars are now back in the playoff spots, and they will almost certainly go through if they manage to win at least two more matches. On the other hand, we have the Melbourne Renegades, whose recent loss to the Brisbane Heat puts them out of contention barring some ridiculous miracle. This is quite possibly the swan song of their hopes of playing in the second round. Before this impactful match starts, let’s take a look at the two participants.
Melbourne Stars predicted XI, preview, form, and key players for this match
Predicted XI: Glenn Maxwell (c), Marcus Stoinis, Nic Maddinson, Hilton Cartwright, Seb Gotch (wk), Zahir Khan, Nick Larkin, Adam Zampa, Billy Stanlake, Haris Rauf, Andre Fletcher.
Things in the Stars’ camp were looking grim until their last win. They had just let go of the long-failing Ben Dunk, and their opener Andre Fletcher was being the wrong kind of consistent, with no score of more than 18 throughout the length of this year’s tournament. Batting first against the Adelaide Strikers in their previous match, the Stars got off to a relatively slow start, with Marcus Stoinis playing a horror innings of 13 from 26. However, for once, Andre Fletcher cut loose and scored a massive 89 off just 49. Supported by Glenn Maxwell’s 37 and Hilton Cartwright’s 30, the Stars posted a solid 179. If the Stars’ batsmen shined, their bowlers were on maximum overdrive. After a short gap following two early strikes, they went on a rampage. With Zampa’s 5-for and Maxwell and Zahir Khan taking 2 each, the Stars picked up 8 wickets in the space of less than 5 overs to vaporize their opponents and get a gigantic 115 run win.
MS Key players
Glenn Maxwell: As always, the most important cog in the Stars’ machine.
Andre Fletcher: Finally showing some form, Fletcher’s firepower might just help the Stars squeeze into the playoffs.
Marcus Stoinis: With his shoulder improving to the point where he can bowl again, Stoinis will want to forget his awful last game and put up a solid all-round performance.
Adam Zampa: The skilful leggie should use the confidence from his five-for against the Strikers to good effect.
Melbourne Renegades predicted XI, preview, form, and key players for this match
Predicted XI: Aaron Finch (c), Beau Webster, Mackenzie Harvey, Sam Harper (wk), Jake Fraser-McGurk, Kane Richardson, Jack Prestwidge, Peter Hatzoglou, Rilee Rossouw, Noor Ahmad, Imad Wasim.
It’s all but over for Aaron Finch’s boys. Only a major miracle involving multiple teams either imploding or having their games cancelled due to poor weather can save them now, and even then it’s an extremely long shot. Battling the Brisbane Heat in their last match, they lost wickets at regular intervals while batting first. It wasn’t until the middle of the innings that Jake Fraser-McGurk and Beau Webster anchored the side to a reasonable 149. When it came time to defend this total, their bowlers didn’t do much better. Only Peter Hatzoglou took two wickets, and Imad Wasim did a decent job for his 1 for 28. In the end, the Renegades lost by 5 wickets.
MR Key players
Shaun Marsh: It’s now or never for Shaun Marsh to really carry the Renegades, and he has shown in the past that he prefers the ‘now’ option.
Aaron Finch: Like Marsh, Finch’s skills need to materialize immediately in order to make a tangible difference for the Renegades.
Kane Richardson: After a few quiet games, Richardson needs to pull off an excellent performance this time.
Peter Hatzoglou: The most consistent bowler for the Renegades, Hatzoglou must do better than ever.
MS vs MR weather and pitch conditions
It’s going to be a chilly early morning in Melbourne, with the temperature climbing slowly into the afternoon. There’s a very small chance of rain from the partly cloudy skies, and a slight breeze will cool the players down even further. Overall, a decent day for cricket through and through.
Given how successful both batsmen and spinners were in the previous match at the MCG, we’re going to go out on a limb and say the conditions will remain the same. As long as the former can read the latter, they can do well. First innings scores of 165+ should be a decent bet on this pitch.
Can the Stars go one step closer to qualifying for the playoffs? Or will the Renegades kick open the lid of their coffin for a last-ditch attempt? Find out if our Melbourne Stars vs Melbourne Renegades prediction comes true on Sunday!
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|Players to score a fifty:|
|A Fletcher/G Maxwell (MS), S Marsh/A Finch (MR)|