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The fans will witness two of the most important clashes of the recent times in the Big Bash League, one that will push one of the two teams placed in the bottom half of the table to the top-four and the other which will most likely strenghten a team's position at the ladder. Brisbane Heat and Perth Scorchers are set to meet each other on 11th January at WACA, Perth. While Brisbane Heat are in the top four at the moment, a loss here might just push them in the bottom four, considering the tight competition we have in the middle of the points table. We are already past the halfway mark in the tournament and considering that each point is going to play a big role as far as the qualification to the playoffs is concerned, we expect this match to be as tightly contested as any.
Even the difference between Brisbane Heat and Perth Scorchers is of three places, the are separated by just a couple of points. A win for Scorchers would push them on par with the Scorchers, at least on the basis of points. As it stands, they are placed at the sixth spot with six points to their name. They have a pretty poor net run-rate, which they would like to improve as the tournament progresses.
The Scorchers have already played against the Heat earlier in the tournament and they registered a massive 30-run victory in that match. Their batting flopped in their match, but their bowlers bowled with heart to restrict Brisbane Heat to just 109 runs. However, the Scorchers failed to keep the momentum as they were defeated by Hobart Hurricanes in their subsequent match before the Scorchers bounced back with a scintiallating win over Melbourne Renegades.
Chasing a total of 175 against the Renegades with Josh Inglis and Liam Livingstone hitting spledid fifties. The duo has gained in confidence as we have moved ahead in the tournament and their performance will be key to the Scorchers' fortunes in the upcoming match. Earlier with the ball, Jhye Richardson and Mitchell Marsh were brilliant to keep Renegades to 175, which although was competitive, it was at least 15 runs short of the par score on the surface. Richardson picked up three wickets for 22 in his four overs and Mitchell Marsh contributed with two dismissals to his name.
Josh Inglis, Liam Livingstone, SM Whiteman, CT Bancroft, Mitchell Marsh, Cameron Green, Tim David, Chris Jordan, Jhye Richardson, Joel Paris, Fawad Ahmed.
Brisbane Heat have had a roller-coaster ride in the tournament so far. While their batting has been consistent in scoring towering totals, they are also the only team to be bundled out for a total score of less than a hundred.
Despite the inconsistencies, the Brisbane Heat are placed at the third spot on the ladder and are looking pretty good to solidify their position. They have a decent net run-rate of 0.183 and a total of eight points to their name.
Their inconsistency with the bat hasn't really reflected in their last three performances. The likes of Chris Lynn, Ben Cutting, and Tom Banton were brilliant in their last three matches and will be looking to produce a similar performance in the upcoming match as well. While the Heat were considered to be hot favorites with the bat before the tournament started, their bowling has impressed one and all as well.
Against Hobart Hurricanes, their bowlers were brilliant to keep the opponents to a manageable total, picking up wickets at regular intervals. Josh Lalor and Ben Laughlin were brilliant in the opening as well as the middle overs as the duo returned with impressive figures of 5 for 42 in their eight overs combined. Josh Lalor picked up three wickets out of those five.
Tom Banton, Max Bryant, Chris Lynn, Matt Renshaw, Joe Burns , Jimmy Peirson, Ben Cutting, James Pattinson, Josh Lalor, Ben Laughlin, Zahir Khan.
Considering the stiff competition in the middle of the points table to get into the top-four, this match is as important as it can get. Both the sides have been pretty inconsistent in the tournament so far, but that has been the case with all the sides in the tournament except Melbourne Stars. While the Heat are over-reliant on Chris Lynn and Tom Banton, it would be foolish to ignore them considering the form they are in. While the Scorchers have a better-balanced unit, albeit not by much, Brisbane Heat have flair and aggression, both of which could be decisive factors in a crunch contest. For that reason and the other reasons mentioned above, the Heat are more likely to emerge on top in this upcoming fixture.
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