The Heat will be playing at their home turf at the Gabba; a venue where they have fared well. However, Adelaide Strikers have beaten Brisbane Heat three times in the last four matches.
Chris Lynn has taken over the captaincy duties for the season from Brendon McCullum. McCullum has been quite consistent for the side and was their highest run-getter in the last season as well.
There is a school of thought to push down Lynn at No 3 and open with Max Bryant, who performed exceedingly well for Queensland in the JLT cup, along with McCullum.
In the absence of Pakistani leg spinner Shadab Khan, mystery spinner Mujibur Rahman from Afghanistan has been roped in. He along with Michelle Swepson will form the spin attack. James Pattinson and Mark Steketee would also be key in the bowling line up.
Although Brisbane Heat ended at the seventh spot in the last season, they would like to start afresh. The side would know that it is all about momentum and they do have the acumen to leave a mark in the tournament.
The biggest minus point for Adelaide Strikers would be the unavailability of skipper Travis Head who is now part of the Australian Test team. The batting will rely on Alex Carey Jake Weatherald and Colin Ingram. Both Weatherald and Carey were among the highest run-scorers in the last season with 383 and 443 runs respectively.
With the ball, Rashid Khan would lead the pack comprising Billy Stanlake and Ben Laughlin who are terrific T20 bowlers themselves.
Brisbane Heat- Brendon McCullum, Chris Lynn (c), Max Bryant, Joe Burns, Alex Ross, James Peirson (wk), Mark Steketee, James Pattinson, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Brendan Doggett, Mitchell Swepson
Adelaide Strikers- Alex Carey (wk), Jake Weatherald, Colin Ingram (c), Matthew Short, Jonathan Wells, Jake Lehmann, Michael Neser, Rashid Khan, Peter Siddle, Ben Laughlin, Billy Stanlake
Cricket Betting Tips and Match Predictions*
Who will win? – Adelaide Strikers
Head to head – Matches Played: 7; Brisbane Heat Won: 3; Adelaide Strikers Won: 4
Top Batsman (Runs Scored) – Colin Ingram (Adelaide Strikers), Max Bryant (Brisbane Heat)
Top Bowler (Wickets taken) – Rashid Khan (Adelaide Strikers), Mujeeb Ur Rahman (Brisbane Heat)
Most Sixes – Colin Ingram (Adelaide Strikers), Max Bryant (Brisbane Heat)
Team Scores Batting First – Adelaide Strikers 170+, Brisbane Heat 150+
*NB these predictions may be changed nearer the start of the match once the final starting teams have been announced and we will be running ‘In–Play’ features soon, so stay tuned.
© Cricket World