Perth Scorchers v Sydney Sixers
Friday 28 January, 08:40
TV: live on BT Sport
Scorchers topped the league and made it to the final at the first attempt after beating Sixers in the qualifier. No team has scored more runs and one (Thunder) batted at a faster rate - and only then at a smidge.
Arguably they are stronger now than at any stage in the tournament. Josh Inglis and Jhye Richardson have both been returned to them after Ashes duty. Richardson has meant Scorchers have not missed Tymal Mills, who left to play for England in the Caribbean.
Kurtis Patterson, the bolter of the tournament, has been superb in the opening berth. Alongside Marsh, Colin Munro and Ashton Turner they have all busted more than 300.
Probable XI: Patterson, Inglis, M Marsh, Munro, Turner, Evans, A Agar, Richardson, Tye, Behren-dorff, Hatzoglou.
Sixers have no right to be in the final. Covid finally caught up with them to compound injury problems. They were down to the bare bones against Strikers in the Challenger.
Josh Philippe, Jack Edwards and Daniel Edwards have all tested positive and are out of the final. Daniel Hughes (ankle) is also likely to miss out.
It meant that Jay Lenton, a coach, had to take the gloves and Hayden Kerr, a tailender who had opened once previously, produced the most extraordinary innings to chase down 169.
Unfortunately they picked up more injuries. Moises Henriques and Jordan Silk are doubtful. They may have to slam back the painkillers and get on with it. Nathan Lyon's availability is a major boost.
Possible XI: Kerr, Avendano, Carder, Henriques, Christian, Silk, Abbott, Dwarshius, Lenton, Lyon, O'Keefe.
In the qualifier Perth busted the average score (163) and then some. They posted 189 and won at a canter, a margin of 48 runs. There's a slight bias for the side batting first (51%) but it's not a big enough trend to factor in.
This season runs have been easy to come by. In 10 matches, more than 160 has been busted six times. Three of those were more than 200. If Scorchers bat first, a bet on 180 or more wouldn't be the worst.
Scorchers have dominated rivals
Scorchers are 1.454/9 which is the price they should be considering Sixers' player drain. The Sixers are 3.1085/40.
If the Sixers are to make it a hat-trick of title wins, they may have to prove the theory that a team only need a couple of decent performances to win a T20 game. Kerr, Lyon, Henriques, Dan Christian, Ben Dwarshius and Sean Abbott are each capable of changing the game.
And that's what you're betting on if the 3.1085/40 floats your boat. That and the fact that Sixers are the meanest bowling unit in the competition. At the very least a trade is possible.
The head-to-head for Sixers does not look. They have lost three times to Perth this term with much stronger teams.
Kerr, who hit 98 from 58 balls, is 7/2 for top Sixers bet. If he was capable of consistent scores he'd have batted higher a lot more often. With so little to beat, Christian looks underrated at 8/1. Justin Avendano is also toppy at 5/1 considering he should open.
For Scorchers, Inglis is 10/3. He top scored in that previous meeting with 79. Laurie Evans could be worth an interest at 16/1. Evans has been surprisingly good in the finishing role.