About the Match
Sydney Thunders will host Melbourne Stars at Stadium Australia, Sydney on New Year’s Day in the Big Bash league match; sitting at the bottom of the points table and yet to open their account, the hosts will need to pull off a miracle to beat the present leaders of the league, who have 4 points in their kitty so far. The Thunders lost their last match against the Strikers by 6 runs and it was a very disappointing loss that they need to put behind them and move ahead with a positive attitude. The Stars on the other hand won both their previous matches, against the Renegades and Sixers, emphatically by huge margins. It will be quite interesting to see if the underdogs can fight out with the top team and emerge victorious or the reigning Stars continue to lead the pack with their brilliant performance yet again.
Bowlers Dirk Nannes and Feldman took 2 wickets each while Woakes and Sandri took a wicket each to break partnerships of the opposition, however too many runs were given away and they faced a target of 154 runs. The total was achievable and Michael Hussy battled hard to score 85 off 56 balls; along with Morgan, he put up a partnership of 109 runs for the 4th wicket and the team seemed to approach its first victory, however it was not to be and the great batsman fell just before the last ball of the match was bowled and the team lost the match by just 6 runs. This was their 15th consecutive defeat and the players were too disappointed with the result especially after the great efforts by their star batsman. They need to rise above their weaknesses and make a comeback into the series if they want to keep their hopes alive here.
The Stars have had a brilliant run so far, winning both their matches by huge margins; while they defeated Sydney Sixers by 77 runs, their victory against the Renegades in the opening match of the league was by a margin of 76 runs. In both matches, the batsmen demonstrated their exemplary skills and posted 200+ totals for the opposition that the bowlers defended very well to win the contests. In the last match against the Sixers, David Hussey scored an unbeaten 50 off 41 balls to take their total to 200 runs. Maxwell and Wade contributed well and kept the scoreboard ticking. All the bowlers except Malinga took regular wickets, with Maxwell leading the squad with 3-26. It was a collective team effort and this side deserves to be on top of the table; they will be eager to maintain the lead and with their eyes set on the top-four berth, this team is rather very difficult to beat.
Sydney Thunders have the resources to take on the top teams like Melbourne Stars but they need to strategize well and come out with all guns blazing if they want to put up a tough fight for the opposition. The Stars on the other hand have everything going for them and they are presently invincible; and though Thunders have the home advantage, this will be an easy win for the Melbourne Stars.
Melbourne Stars, 2.20@ William Hill