The latest match of the Big Bash League season sees the Melbourne Renegades looking to become the first side to beat the Hobart Hurricanes when the two teams do battle in the one fixture taking place on Monday.
The Hurricanes have played five times in this tournament so far and they have won each and every one of them while after a good start to their season, the Melbourne Renegades have come off the top of their form and could really do with a victory.
It looked as though the Melbourne Renegades were going to defy the odds this season when they won their opening two matches in pretty decent style, but the concerns many had over them entering the campaign, notably their light looking top order, has come home to bite them and they go into this one off the back of three successive defeats.
It has not been the defeats that have necessarily been the problem, it has been the manner of them and the fact that all three have been down to their failing batting line up. They have entered the stage of switching players around to find a working combination and when that occurs you know a side has worries in that department. At least they are good with the ball should they stumble across the correct batting set up.
It is very rare in T20 franchise competitions for teams to be five matches in and look like they have no problems to deal with but that is very much the case with the Hobart Hurricanes. They have cruised to their five victories and are firing in all of the major departments with their top order making runs and their bowlers delivering the goods at all stages of the innings.
It became clear almost immediately that there were only going to be two things to stop the Hurricanes in their tracks this season. ODI call ups were likely to be an issue and then complacency the other. Amazingly Australia have left D’Arcy Short, Matthew Wade and Ben McDermott alone so now it is all about whether they can maintain their focus right to the end with it looking like their finals spot will be secured pretty early.
The big news for the Melbourne Renegades is that Aaron Finch has been released by Australia to play for the home side. He will come in for Joe Mennie and captain the side and his batting ability will be strongly needed.
Not surprisingly, the Hobart Hurricanes have named another unchanged squad with Jake Doran and David Moody looking and waiting for an illness or injury if they are going to get in. Without that the Hurricanes will most likely be unchanged.
There has been a significant drift on the Hobart Hurricanes since the news that Finch is available has been announced but I fancy it might need more than his return to see the Renegades over the line in this one. Finch is a quality cricketer but he was dumped by Australia because he was in awful form so there is no guarantee he’ll hit the ground running here.
Finch or no Finch there is nothing at all wrong with the Hobart Hurricanes at the minute and I only think the return of the Aussie ODI captain is making the visiting side an even better price for us to snap up than they previously were. All of the Hurricanes’ batting is firing as are their bowlers. I’ll take them at the prices on show.
Back Hobart Hurricanes to beat Melbourne Renegades for a 4/10 stake at 1.91 with BetVictor