Adelaide Strikers v Hobart Hurricanes
Sunday December 13th, 03:15 GMT
Live on BT Sport
Rashid Khan holds key for Strikers
Adelaide Strikers play their first match of BBL10 and, like a number of T20 franchises around the world, they are relying on Rashid Khan to an extent. The leg spinner's returns in the most recent IPL were his best in the tournament, both in terms of economy rate and best figures. Khan may not be here for the entire competition but he can get Adelaide off to a crucial fast start.
The Strikers will be without Alex Carey and Harry Conway for this opener and much will depend on Jake Weatherald and Peter Siddle in their absence. Sussex Sharks' Phil Salt has an opportunity to impress at the top of the order while Matt Renshaw's arrival gives Adelaide a useful left hand/right hand balance if those two open the batting.
Hurricanes breeze past defending champions
With just four runs on the board and both openers in the hutch without scoring, Hobart looked an unlikely bet against Sydney Sixers on the first day of BBL10. A relatively patient 55 from Colin Ingram and an explosive 58 from Tim David took the Hurricanes to 178/8 which proved to be a comfortable winning total in the end.
Hobart will start as the outside bet against Adelaide but they showed depth to their batting. James Faulkner is listed to come in behind David at number eight while Will Jacks and D'Arcy Short will trouble the scorers from here on. The bowling was tight as a unit but there would be concern over the aging and, out of retirement Johan Botha who went for 18 from his two overs. D'Arcy Short's wrist spin is a luxury within the attack and Hurricanes' slow bowlers could be the weak link.
Home comforts for Hobart?
Although listed as the away side, the Hurricanes will take to the field at the Blundstone Arena in their native Hobart. The hosts won just two of their five games here last season so we shouldn't read too much into any perceived home advantage.
The average first innings score here at BBL9 was 183 and four of those five matches went to the side taking first knock. The weather isn't expected to intervene so it could be a case of bat first and bat big.
The markets favour Adelaide with the Strikers leading the way at 1.794/5 while Hobart trail at 2.245/4. We've naturally focused on Rashid Khan and the result could well depend on how the Hurricanes top order approach his four overs. If Rashid isn't involved in the Powerplay, Short and Jacks will need to go at around 10 an over which would see the Afghanistan international contain rather than take wickets.
With greater depth to their batting line up, Hobart can then be allowed to post a total that would claim the points. That's the most likely scenario if we are to see a Hurricanes' victory and that's what I'm backing here.
Colin Ingram's 55 from 42 balls against the Sixers was patient by his explosive standards but it's a good indication of things to come. The left hander may start at around 4.03/1 as Hobart's top batsman and that looks to be a value pick at that figure.
It's hoped that Hurricanes fans see more of Will Jacks who once scored a century from 25 balls in a T10 game. Jacks will be an option at around 4.57/2 while D'Arcy Short will start as favourite at 3.02/1 or longer, but Ingram is the tip.
As always, there's a number of tempting options for the third bet of the day. Hobart to hit the most sixes would be my preference but, while they're the outside pick to win the game, I'm not the only one to spot that they are blessed with more power hitters than Adelaide, Hurricanes are likely to start as favourites to hit the most maximums at 1.84/5 or possibly a touch higher.
Meanwhile, the sportsbook currently has a price boost of 3/1 from 5/2 for Rashid Khan to be the Strikers' clear top wicket taker. He's pivotal to the match and that lift could provide the best value here.