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After a break for the One Day International between the Australia vs India ODI, the Big Bash League is going to see Sydney Thunder take on the Adelaide Strikers. Sydney Thunder has slipped drastically after a very promising start to the season and now has to deal with the loss of Jos Buttler as well.
Adelaide Strikers have moved on to second place in the BBL league table after winning their match against the Melbourne Stars by a massive 41 runs. The teams are still pretty closely packed together and any one of the BBL sides could leapfrog few places by winning a couple of games.
There has been nothing much to pick between the Big Bash teams this season and that is exactly what the fans want to see.
Sydney Thunder has to fill a huge hole in its side after the departure of Jos Buttler for international duty. He was the leading run scorer of the Big Bash at the time of his leaving and single-handedly responsible for winning a few games for Sydney Thunder.
Joe Root is also going to leave the BBL but that is not that big of a loss.
Sydney Thunder is going to welcome Anton Devcich and Chris Jordan to be their overseas players for the remainder of the tournament. These are interesting choices and will require some re-balancing because two batsmen are going to be replaced by one batsman and a bowler.
Anton Devcich should fit in at the top of the order and contribute with a few overs as well while Chris Jordan will take responsibility of bowing at the end of the inning.
While the batting strength of Sydney Thunder is going to suffer by losing Joe Root, we actually think that their bowling might improve. The addition of two more bowlers who can bowl will give them options and allow them to play the three spinners they seem to prefer.
Shane Watson and Callum Ferguson will have to play a bigger role at the top of the order while Jason Sangha assumes responsibility in the middle. Not having Root in the middle order will also allow Sangha and Sams more time in the middle.
Fawad Ahmed and Chris Green continue to be the most successful bowlers for Sydney Thunder with the fast bowlers being rotated on a consistent basis. The addition of two all-rounders may also allow Sydney Thunder to play an additional batsman in their side.
SR Watson, Anton Devcich, Callum Ferguson, Jason Sangha, Arjun Nair, Daniel Sams, Christopher Green, Chris Jordan, Jay Lenton, Gurinder Sandhu, Fawad Ahmed.
The loss of Alex Carey at the top of the order has not affected the Adelaide Strikers at all. The experiment of sending Matthew Short to the top of the order did not work out but the rest of the batsmen played very well.
Jake Weatherald scored some runs, Travis Head looked very good during his stay in the middle, and Colin Ingram scored another fifty. Jonathan Wells also played another quickfire inning of 32 off just 14 deliveries to boost the Adelaide Strikers total.
We always believe that the Adelaide Strikers will win most of their matches if they can get a score above 150. Their batting looks very strong now that Travis Head has joined the side and is going to be around for a while.
Head hit three sixes in his inning and is a good choice to be the highest scoring batsman in the upcoming match. It was also interesting to see Rashid Khan being sent in to get the scoreboard moving, which shows his development as a batsman in recent times.
There was some concern about how the Adelaide Strikers bowling would stack up after the loss of Billy Stanlake and Peter Siddle. Stanlake was actually released after not being picked for the first ODI and we think he may play this upcoming match.
Wes Agar did a pretty good job in the previous match but he may have to sit out if Stanlake plays. Wickets for Neser, Laughlin, and Rashid Khan showed that the Adelaide Strikers have enough back up to be able to withstand the loss of a few players.
The Adelaide Strikers appear to be getting stronger with every match and that should be scary to future opponents.
Jake Weatherald, Matthew Short, TM Head, Colin Ingram, JW Wells, Harry Nielsen, Michael Neser, Rashid Khan, Ben Laughlin, Liam O'Connor, Billy Stanlake.
The side winning the toss is likely to bat first
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The BBL 08 match between Sydney Thunder and the Adelaide Strikers is going to be played at the Sydney Showground Stadium, Sydney. The weather is expected to be clear on match day.
The pitch at the Sydney Showground Stadium has been a bit slow and helpful to the spinners. There are runs to be had by targeting the small boundaries as well. A good contest between the bat and ball is expected.
The Adelaide Strikers are seeming more formidable with every match. The loss of three of their first XI players has not fazed them and they go into this match as obvious favorites. Sydney Thunder has been very dependent on Jos Buttler this season and now that he is not available, the other players have to step up. There is enough uncertainty around Sydney Thunder to avoid them in this match.
Back Adelaide Strikers to win.
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