The Hundred 2023 – Trent Rockets vs Southern Brave Tips, TV and Betting Preview

The third season of The Hundred begins in fine fashion on Tuesday evening when the two sides to have got their hands on the trophy meet as the Trent Rockets begin their title defence when they face the Southern Brave at Trent Bridge.

The title defence of the Brave didn’t go to plan last season so they start out with a point to prove, while the Rockets will be out to show that their title success was no fluke and that they are capable of retaining the trophy.

Where to watch

The match will be shown on both the Sky Cricket and BBC Two channels with the build-up to the game beginning on both at 6pm ahead of the start at 6.30pm.

Trent Rockets

The Trent Rockets were fine winners of the title a year ago having topped the table and then taking advantage of that when they won the final at Lord’s. They had the leading batter of the tournament a year ago and won the title without their England Test players who had to leave the competition after about a week of it. That would suggest there is even more to come from the Rockets and if that comes to fruition they are entitled to be tough to beat.

If anything, the Rockets look stronger anyway when you consider they were able to pick up Sam Hain and John Turner in the draft. Such is the strength of their batting that Hain isn’t guaranteed to get a game despite the quality he possesses. Turner only arrived in the Vitality Blast wildcard draft so he wouldn’t have been guaranteed a start anyway but might have forced his way in with a particularly strong finish to that competition.

Southern Brave

The Southern Brave were the inaugural winners of this competition when they recovered from a slightly indifferent start to power home in the way that most Mahela Jayawardena coached sides did. Their title defence was basically a non-entity as although they thrashed the Welsh Fire in their opening match they could only win one of their last seven games and surrendered the trophy quite meekly in the end it has to be said.

A lack of bowling resources caught the Southern Brave out a year ago and on the face of it you wouldn’t say they have definitely sorted that out this time around. They are not going to see too much, if anything, of Jofra Archer, while Tymal Mills, Matthew Fisher and George Garton have all battled injuries this season. The last thing the Brave need is a repeat of last season, particularly with their batting potentially needing to find some form as we go along.

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Key Players

Dawid Malan was the top scorer in the competition a year ago and he has been one of the best white ball batters in England for a while. He will want a big competition to secure a place in the 50 over side ahead of the World Cup so he should be fully motivated here.

James Vince was the top scorer in the Vitality Blast once again and the all-time leading scorer in that competition has the quality to get his side off to a fast start in this tournament. If he gets in and gets going the Brave will be right in the game.


I expect the Trent Rockets to get off to a winning start in their title defence. They just look so much stronger than the Southern Brave even without taking into account the concerns that I have over the Brave bowling. This is a Rockets outfit which could legitimately leave Sam Hain and John Turner out of their starting XI and they were two of the best performers in the Vitality Blast recently. Their depth with the bat and the ball is incredible even allowing for the absence of Rashid Khan, who surely wouldn’t have been that fit to play anyway.

Southern Brave started the first season badly and it was only an abject Welsh Fire that they got the better of in the early stages of their second campaign and with players coming and going at short notice they don’t look as settled as the Trent Rockets. Then there is the issue of injured bowlers or bowlers who haven’t got a full bed of cricket behind them because of injury and you don’t want to be coming into this Trent batting unit not at 100%. I think the Rockets are getting the Brave at the right time and if they keep James Vince quiet the champions can open up their title defence with a victory.


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