Big Bash League Cricket Betting Preview

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Watch Live: Kayo Sports

January 20, 2020

Sydney Sixers v Melbourne Stars

Venue: SCG | Start: 6:40pm (AEDT)

Sydney Sixers – Somehow, the Sixers are still sitting in third place despite not claiming a win in their last three games (two losses, one no-result). Greg Shipperd’s side are equal on points (13) with the Strikers in second, as they both gun for a semi-final ‘qualifier’ against the Stars. With three games to go, the Sixers are well placed and likely only need one win to guarantee a spot in the BBL finals. This could also be the last game before stars Steve Smith and Josh Hazlewood return in what will be a huge boost to the side.

Nathan Lyon returned (although did not bowl) in the Sydney derby, and has said he won’t tinker too much with his method for success in the test arena. “I’m still going to look to take wickets and try to bowl my best ball,” he said. “Nothing really changes too much – little bit of mindset, apart from skill-wise, it’s pretty similar for me. There will be times when we’re put under pressure, every one of us. [We’ve] just got to make sure we take a breath, enjoy the competition and accept the challenge laid ahead.”

The Sixers have made no change to their 13-man squad for this clash, but it remains to be seen whether they stick with the two finger spinner in Lyon and Steve O’Keefe, or look to bring back wrist spinner Lloyd Pope.

Melbourne Stars – Quite incredibly, the Stars have already secured top spot despite each club having three games left in BBL09. Notching another two points in their win over the Scorchers at the MCG on Saturday afternoon, they moved to 20 points (10 wins, one loss), including an unbeaten streak of eight. Finishing first ensures that – under the revamped Big Bash finals series – David Hussey’s side will host the ‘Qualifier’ against the second-placed side, the winner of which goes straight to the final.

Being so far ahead of the competition, the Stars are able to tinker with their lineup and give some players a rest – which is exactly what they’ve opted to do here. Nathan Coulter-Nile will sit out, while Jackson Coleman returns in the only change for the men in green. Coleman’s one and only BBL game this season reaped 3/16. Despite their favourable position, skipper Glenn Maxwell has said they won’t tinker too much with a winning formula. “I don’t think we are going to change too much in the lead-up [to the finals]. I still think we are going to go about our business the way we have recently,” he said. “We will still give our bowlers a decent rest, we will make sure that we are playing the right guys and giving them some experience into some other people in case we have injuries as well. But we will also keep trying things.”

Betting Analysis – There is more rain forecast for Sydney on Monday, but fans will hope that – like at Saturday night’s derby – they can squeeze in a result. Either way, the pitch will likely be a difficult one to bat on given it has spent an extended period under the covers. As such, don’t expect a high-scoring run fest. Look for skipper Moises Henriques to bounce back this game with the bat, while Jackson Bird could extract decent seam movement off a moist pitch. For the visitors, Marcus Stoinis remains the best batting option in the individual markets while Haris Rauf, like Bird, could cause issues off this SCG surface.

Head to Head: Melbourne Stars
Top Runs Scorer – Sydney Sixers: Moises Henriques
Most Wickets – Sydney Sixers: Jackson Bird
Top Runs Scorer – Melbourne Stars: Marcus Stoinis
Most Wickets – Melbourne Stars: Haris Rauf