Melbourne Renegades v Hobart Hurricanes
Tuesday 8:15, Live on Sky Sports
Hurricanes in the hunt for Playoff spot
With two wins from their last four, the Hurricanes are still on track to make the Playoffs.
The good news is that their two remaining fixtures are against out-of-form and struggling sides in the two Melbournes.
Last time out it was Riley Meredith who walked away with the man of the match award after taking 3/29 in a winning effort against the Thunder. Quite why that was deemed a better effort than Jordan's Thompson's 3/24, which included dismissing numbers two and three, is anyone's guess.
But it shouldn't have gone to Thompson, either. The real match-winner was Matthew Wade, whose quickfire 83 off 54 was the real difference between the sides.
They've had a strange habit of tinkering with the openers all season. Last time out Wade batted at three and D'Arcy Short at four. Odd given they're one of the most prolific batting partnerships ever in the BBL.
Hurricanes' Likely XI:
Wade, McDermott, Short, Jewell, David, Handscomb, Thompson, Owen, Rogers, Meredith, Lamichhane.
Reflection time for the Renegades
The seasons go by and the Renegades' troubles continue.
Some new blood came in, a new captain was appointed but here we are again with the men in red rock bottom once more.
Last time out they were thrashed by their rivals, the Stars.
Their 122 was chased pretty easily by Glenn Maxwell and co after only Aaron Finch (another bizarrely batting out of position at five) got going with a decent 45.
It's time to already start thinking about next season. The top order is actually pretty good but they'll need to recruit at least two decent fast bowlers and a batting all-rounder for starters, if they're to improve on yet another poor season.
Marsh, Fraser-MacGurk, Maddinson, Finch, Harvey, Harper, Prestwidge, Boyce, Richardson, Lalor, Khan
Venue and conditions
Melbourne Docklands had been one of the highest-scoring grounds until that poor effort from the Renegades against the Stars.
In truth, the problem was more the batters from the side in red than a wicket that suddenly had demons in it.
If it's the Hurricanes getting first digs, with the likes of McDermott, Wade and Short getting going, they could well get past 190.
The Renegades would probably rather bat first too because that's been the way to go here but after what happened last time, they may be some 'fuzzy thinking' going on.
Before checking the odds, I had it in mind that I'd be tipping and betting on the Hurricanes at anything above 1.758/11.
But they're just 1.68/13 and that's no price for a side who is just fifth and not exactly the epitome of consistency themselves.
So does that make the Renegades a bet at big-looking 2.56/4? No. They're not a side to back with borrowed money, given two of their three wins this season were against teams missing half of their players through Covid.
If you want to play this market, a back-to-lay of the Renegades is probably your best chance of a profit, but only if they bat first.
I don't remember D'Arcy Short ever being as big as 5/1 in a Hurricanes top batsman market.
The main reasoning for the big, big price is his batting position. The layers think he may come in at four or five. They also think BBL top scorer Ben McDermott (curiously boosted to 13/5) and Wade (16/5) will be hard to beat.
But there are two possible flaws in both those arguments. One: they've changed their batting order so much that it would be no surprise if Short returned to open alongside McDermott, with Jewell making way.
And two: Short has still scored 310 runs this campaign, despite being shifted around, making him the side's second highest runscorer. Sure, McDermott has 513 but as stated already, that's more than anyone else has managed this season in the Bash.
Quite frankly, he's far too big a price for a man with his record and that price will look pretty silly if they move up the order.
Definitely worth a punt.
Renegades stalwart Kane Richardson is one of the few players who didn't let the Renegades down this season.
One of the game's great competitors and one of the league's most consistent bowlers, he has 19 wickets in 11 matches at the excellent strike rate of 12.
Zahir Khan with 12 is the only other bowler in the team who is onto double figures for wickets with 12.
Only once this season has Richardson failed to take a wicket and he's generally good for two. That could be more than enough.