Paul Krishnamurty previews the first of a triple-header to finalise the group stages, predicting Perth will maintain their fine run...
"This bet would have landed against 75% of Perth's opponents this season, and Heat aren't particularly strong in that department."
Brisbane Heat v Perth Scorchers
Tuesday, 01:30 GMT
Live on BT Sport
Can anyone stop Perth Scorchers' unstoppable march to a fourth Big Bash title? After a brilliant run of eight wins from nine matches, mostly very one-sided, they're assured a top-two place and therefore, two cracks at making a sixth appearance in the final. Odds of 2.3611/8 for the title are prohibitive, but fair.
All or nothing scenario for Heat
In contrast, Heat have been up against it throughout. To reach the play-offs, they must win this at the very least. Unless getting the bonus point or winning by a big margin to take their run-rate above Strikers, qualification would still rely on Hobart losing to bottom-placed Renegades.
When these two met last week, Scorchers ran out easy winners by a 59 run margin. The formbook firmly points to something similar and implies shorter odds than the 1.738/11 currently available on the exchange.
Scorchers fancied to confirm form
The caveat, as ever, involves the toss. The team batting first has won 18 of the last 30 matches (60%) at the Adelaide Oval. I'm not convinced it will hugely affect the odds - that wasn't the case in Saturday's Strikers v Thunder match.
In any case, the plan is to employ my '25% rule', aiming to back Scorchers at higher odds in-running. Set the order at 2.111/10.
Run projections depend which side bats first. This morning's match at the Adelaide Oval was rain-shortened so I'll exclude it from the figures. 15 of the previous 29 1st Innings here produced a total beyond 170 and that was enough to win on 11 occasions.
I don't doubt Scorchers can hit that target, although it will likely be reflected by short odds. I wouldn't trust Heat to get 170 though, against the best bowling attack in the competition.
Back unders on Heat sixes line
The most sixes Perth have conceded in any match this season is seven (twice). Over 5.5 looks a big ask for Heat. This bet would have landed against 75% of Perth's opponents this season, and Heat aren't particularly strong in that department.
Heat very reliant on Lynn
Chris Lynn has hit 20 of their 69 maximums, with nobody else contributing more than eight. A further measure of his importance is that he's top-scored in two-thirds of all his appearances. Remove him cheaply and Heat can be restricted.
Given that record, it is hard to quibble with odds of 9/4 for Top Heat Runscorer. That said, their top order are stronger now Marnus Labuschagne has arrived. He's a 13/5 chance.
Colin Munro top-scored for Scorchers with 82 from 54 in last week's reverse fixture. He's 3/1 to repeat, behind 11/4 favourite Jason Roy.
Follow Paul on Twitter @paulmotty
Paul's 2020/21 Big Bash P/L: