About the Match
Melbourne Renegades have suffered defeat in three games consecutively and have slipped to the 4th position with 8 points; they will take on Sydney Thunder, who are in the 5th place with 8 points, on 24th January at Canberra in their penultimate league match. For Sydney Thunder this is the last league match to try and make it to the next stage, and we could see them come out all guns blazing here. The Renegades lost their last game against Strikers by 26 runs, and they will try to make amends here to keep their hopes alive amidst stiff competition; Thunder too will put their best foot forward and it could be an interesting clash at Canberra on Wednesday.
They easily chased down 148 runs against Melbourne Stars thanks to a power-packed batting performance by the top-order players like Usman Khawaja, James Vince and Shane Watson. Earlier, fast-bowlers Gurinder Sandhu, Mitchell McClenaghan, Chris Green and Shane Watson took 5 wickets between them to restrict the opponents to 147 while spinner Fawad Ahmed also provided one breakthrough. They have a well-balanced mix of spinners and pacers, who can upset the Renegades.
Previously when they met Sydney Sixers, the batting line-up collapsed like a pack of cards with only Chris Green and James Vince contributing well with 49 and 34 runs respectively. However, with no solid partnerships, they could muster only 156 in the end, and the bowlers too put up a dismal show that led to defeat by 8 wickets.
Sydney Thunder has had a mixed run so far, and they need to pull up their socks if they want to have a shot at making it to the knock-out stage.
Chasing 174 against Strikers proved to be an uphill climb for the Renegades as they were stifled at 147; Brad Hodge top-scored with 30 while Marcus Harris and Tom Cooper pitched in with 25 and 24 runs respectively. They have players like Kieron Pollard, Cameron White, Tim Ludeman and Dwayne Bravo, who add depth to the batting line-up. Earlier, pacers Dwayne Bravo, Chris Tremain, Jack Wildermuth and Kieron Pollard provided regular breakthroughs, but they couldn’t stop the Strikers from setting 173 runs.
Against the Stars, they failed to chase down 168 after players like Tim Ludeman, Marcus Harris and Matthew Short were dismissed early in the innings.
Captain Bravo led from the front with 26 off 18 while Mohammad Nabi and Wildermuth tried to keep the scoreboard ticking; however, they lost the match by 23 runs in a disappointing manner despite having a hard-hitting batting line-up. Spinner Mohammad Nabi performed well to register 2-15 in 4 overs but others like Brad Hogg and Jon Holland gave away too many easy runs.
The Renegades have a balanced team with experienced players and young talent, which can help them make a comeback here before it gets too late.
The two teams are taking on each other for the first time this season and we could expect both to try and dominate here in this crucial game. While the Renegades have a star-studded batting line-up, we feel that Sydney Thunder with an in-form pace attack is better placed to emerge victorious.