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With a terrific win over Brisbane Heat, Sydney Sixers added two more points to their tally and became the second team to qualify for the playoffs. They have only one more match to go and while it is no longer possible for them to finish at the top spot of the ladder, they'll love to finish their league stage campaign with a win. Melbourne Renegades finally seem to have found some form, but it is too late for them to qualify for the playoffs. The two aforementioned teams are set to lock horns at Sydney Cricket Ground, on 25th January. For both the sides, this match may not be anything more than a formality, but they both will still be seeking a win nonetheless and we expect a hard-fought contest.
With a win over Brisbane Heat in their previous match, Sydney Sixers strengthened their chances to finish at the second spot on the ladder and face Melbourne Stars in the first qualifier. Another win here would still not ascertain that, but a loss should put Adelaide Strikers in a better position to finish among the top two teams.
As of now, the Sixers are placed at the second spot on the ladder with 17 points to their name and a reasonably good net run-rate of 0.234. They, however, will have 19 points if they manage to win the upcoming match.
With the return of Marnus Labuchagne and Steven Smith to their batting lineup, the Sixers couldn't have hoped for a better result. Not only did they welcome the international pair with success, but also helped them transision back into the side with considerable ease. However, there wasn't much the Aussie pair could do against the Brisbane Heat. Marnus Labushagne didn't even feature in the playing eleven. The star of the night for the Sixers was Steven O'Keefe, who broke the backbone of Brisbane Heat's batting. Jackson Bird, Ben Dwarshius, Nathan Lyon, and Tom Curran all did a brilliant job with the ball to restrict Brisbane Heat.
On a surface where batting was like a walk in the park, Sydney Sixers didn't need to do anything spectacular. Josh Philippe and James Vince batted almost right through the innings to take the Sixers to a win. Both their openers scored a fifty each as the Sixers cruised to a win with eight wickets in hand and more than four overs to spare.
Josh Philippe, J Vince, Steven Smith, Moises Henriques, Daniel Hughes, Jordan Silk, Tom Curran, B Dwarshuis, Nathan Michael Lyon, Steve O'Keefe, JR Hazlewood.
After scoring back to back wins over Sydney Thunder and Brisbane Heat in consecutive matches, Melbourne Renegades succumbed to a narrow loss against Hobart Hurricanes. Although the result of that game was of little significance in all aspects of the game, the result would have pinched the Renegades.
Currently, the Renegades are placed at the bottom spot on the ladder with just two wins to their name. Both of those came wins recently and they seem to be in pretty good form.
Against the Hurricanes, they played really well, but still ended up four runs short. It was more of an excellent performance from the Hurricanes as the Renegades lost the match despite putting up an exceptional fight.
Brayden Stepien, Aaron Finch, BJ Webster, TLW Cooper, Nathan McSweeney, Mohammad Nabi, DT Christian, Will Sutherland, SR Patel, KW Richardson, Cameron Boyce.
Considering the way the two teams have done in the tournament so far, the match rather appears to be a mismatch. Sydney Sixers are sitting comfortably at the top of the ladder whereas the Renegades are languishing at the bottom. Having said that, both the sides have had a decent run of late and it should be a well-fought contest. With Steven Smith back in the Sixers' lineup, they have only gained in strength. They are playing this upcoming match in their home ground and are better placed to emerge on top in the upcoming encounter.
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