Sydney Sixers v Adelaide Strikers: Sixers to win high-scoring contest

James Vince
James Vince is an important member of a strong Sixers batting line-up

Both sides should pass 160 at a high-scoring ground here at the SCG with the Sixers eventually emerging victorious, says Jamie Pacheco.

"Those who have been reading BBL previews for a few years now will know that Wes Agar generally rates a good bet for Strikers top bowler."

Sydney Sixers v Adelaide Strikers
Tuesday, 08:15, Live on Sky Sports

Sixers' injuries a cause for concern

Another extremely solid start to the Sixers' campaign, who are now top of the table on 11 points from four matches, albeit with a game in hand over the unbeaten Perth Scorchers.

Last time out Josh Philipe engineered a stiff chase against the Melbourne Stars with 99 not out, ably assisted by good cameo from Moises Henriques and Jordan Silk.

They'll have been disappointed top have let Glenn Maxwell get to 100 with what was virtually their best bowling attack out but luckily for them, their batsmen and Philippe in particular bailed them out.

But they have serious injury problems ahead of this one.

Tom Curran Sydney Sixers.jpg

Tom Curran is out of the tournament. He was expensive, going at over 10 an over across four games but picked up five wickets and is always handy with the bat in this format. They'll find it virtually impossible to replace him with someone of any real quality this late in the day, if at all.

Ben Manenti is also out of this year's BBL after suffering a neck stress fracture.

Veteran Steve O'Keefe also misses out here but should be back for the next one.

Sixers Likely XI: Vince, Philippe, Henriques, Hughes, Silk, Christian, Jordan, Abbott, Kerr, Dwarshius, Pope.

No Plan B for Strikers

It must be tough for the Strikers to watch Travis Head, Alex Carey and Michael Neser in Ashes action and know what a difference those three would have made to their campaign.

All three of those have been good so far, Travis Head the man-of-the-match in the First Test after a fine hundred.

But that's how the Big Bash works and when your country comes calling, you have to turn your back on your BBL team.

It's a shame because with those three plus consistent performers like Wes Agar, Peter Siddle and Harry Nielsen, they could have had a very competitive side.

Instead, their batting is devoid of power and there's no-one who looks like turning a game on its head with the bat.

That's why they're one from three and only look like winning a game one way: batting first and getting a par score and then hoping Khan and co can squeeze the opposition in the field. There seems to be no Plan B.

Likely XI: Short, Weatherald, Nielsen, Wells, Drew, Kelly, Khan, Worrall, Siddle, Agar, Ahmed.

Venue and conditions

This is a high-scoring ground at Sydney.

The Scorchers scored 195 against the Strikers here, the Hurricanes got 213 against the Sixers and it's where the Sixers got 213 against the Stars.

So big scores are on offer if batsmen, and openers in particular, can play themselves in and cash during the death overs.

In other words, it's not a ground that will suit the Strikers' brands of cricket where low-scoring games play into their hands. If they win the toss, they'll probably go for their usual strategy of batting first but they need to be aware that anything less than 180 is unlikely to be enough.

Siddle.jpg

Sixers hot favourites

The Sixers are 1.564/7 which is pretty much what you'd expect them to be.

They've started the season much better, are 9-5 ahead on the head-to-head and look to have far better options within their squad.

That's even taking into account their injuries. Those are three very good bowlers who they'll be missing but they do have some good players to bring in. When the Strikers lost that trio of their own, they didn't.

I just can't see the Strikers being able to chase anything above 180 and they'll need about 190 of their own if they're to make a good first at defending that against a powerful Sixers batting line-up.

Your best bet could be a trade of the Strikers from 2.68/5 into 2.01/1 batting first but even then, they may never trade at the latter price.

Sixers to win in high-scoring game

A better alternative to the short price on the Sixers can be found in the
#OddsOnThat offerings.

It's 23/10 that both teams score 160+ and the Sixers end up winning.

At such a high-scoring ground, the Strikers should just abut manage to get that batting first, especially with those three bowlers missing for the men in magenta. And if they were to do so, you'd expect the Sixers to chase that quite comfortably.

If it's the Sixers batting first, it's not impossible that they pass 200 with the Strikers crawling to 165 in response despite never really being in the hunt.

It looks a good bet.

Agar value as usual

Those who have been reading BBL previews for a few years now will know that Wes Agar generally rates a good bet for Strikers top bowler.

Rashid Khan bowling 1280.jpg

That's for two reasons. Firstly, he himself is underrated for a man who took 22 wickets last season at a strike rate of 14.9. It was three more than Peter Siddle and six more than Khan, though the legspinner did admittedly only play 10 games to Agar's fifteen. Still, Khan's strike rate of 14.6 was only marginally better than Agar's.

Which bring us to the second reason; Khan himself. The odds-compilers are dead scared of him because with plenty of takers ahead of any game he plays in, they can't afford to offer 'real' prices on him. So Khan is too short (2/1) and everyone else ends up being too big, especially our man Agar.

He's already won once this season and 7/2 is a good price he makes it two.

JAMIE'S 2021-22 BIG BASH P/L

Points wagered: 6pt
Points returned: 9.5
P/L: +3.5

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