Hobart Hurricanes will take on defending champions Sydney Sixers in the opening match of the 2020 Big Bash League at Hobart on Thursday.
Sydney Sixers will be without their skipper Moises Henriques as he will be doing duty for Australia A in the tour match against India starting on Friday ahead of the first Test on December 17. Sean Abbott is also set to miss the game as he is also included in Australia A squad. Daniel Hughes is set to lead Sixers in the absence of Henriques.
They will be without the services of Steve Smith and Josh Hazlewood throughout the season as the two will be doing duty in Australia vs India Test series. However, the Sixers have a few interesting new recruits in Carlos Brathwaite, Jason Holder, and Mitchell Starc, but only Brathwaite will be available throughout the season, due to various reasons such as international commitments to meeting the quarantine restrictions.
Hurricanes will also miss their in-form keeper-batsman and captain Mathew Wade for the majority of the tournament. However, they have a few exciting local talents in D'Arcy Short, James Faulkner, and Peter Handscomb, who will be captaining the side in the absence of Wade.
Hurricanes have boosted their overseas pool by recruiting Colin Ingram of South Africa and Dawid Malan of England and Keemo Paul of West Indies. But the overseas players will be available depending on when they meet the quarantine restrictions.
Match Toss Time: 18:45 Local (13:15 IST)
Match Start Time: 19:15 Local (13:45 IST)
Match Venue: Bellerive Oval, Hobart
The weather will be cloudy, with temperatures hovering around 7 degrees Celsius to 16 degrees Celsius. Hence, it going to be cold. The good news is that rain is unlikely, and hence, full 40 overs is guaranteed.
Bellerive Oval, Hobart is a high scoring ground, with the team batting first winning all the three T20Is played at this ground. The pitch is likely to be good for batting, while there will be some purchase from the wicket for pacers.
Sixers will miss two of their first XI players in captain Henriques and Abbot as they will be doing duty for Australia A in the tour match against India. It would be tough to replace the two-star players. But that gives Sixers the opportunity to test their bench strength early on in the tournament. They have a bunch of all-rounders in Carlos Brathwaite, Daniel Christian, and Steve O’Keefe and are spoilt for choices.
Hurricanes would miss their skipper Mathew Wade, who is in the prime form currently. However, they can count on D’Arcy Short, who always performs in this tournament, and is expected to lead the batting for Hurricanes again this season. The veteran James Faulkner will be leading the bowling attack, and a lot rests on him.
Possible Playing XI
Hobart Hurricanes: D’Arcy Short, Macalister Wright, Colin Ingram, Peter Handscomb (c/wk), Mitchell Owen, James Faulkner, Nathan Ellis, Scott Boland, Riley Meredith, Will Parker, Tim David
Sydney Sixers: Josh Philippe (wk), James Vince, Daniel Hughes (c), Jordan Silk, Carlos Brathwaite, Daniel Christian, Steve O’Keefe, Lloyd Pope, Jackson Bird, Ben Dwarshuis, Hayden Kerr
HH vs SS Fantasy Team
D’Arcy Short (HH), Colin Ingram (HH), James Vince (SS), Josh Philippe (SS), Carlos Brathwaite (SS), Daniel Christian (SS), Steve O’Keefe (SS), James Faulkner (HH), Scott Boland (HH), Jackson Bird (SS), Peter Handscomb (HH).
Captain picks: Carlos Brathwaite (SS) and Peter Handscomb (HH)
Vice-Captain picks: D’Arcy Short (HH) and James Vince (SS)
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