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Melbourne Stars will be up against Brisbane Heat in the 51st match of the Big Bash League 2021. Both sides have struggled for consistency in the league this season and only three points separate them in the BBL11 table.
Despite a comfortable win in the recent Melbourne derby, Melbourne Stars failed to carry the same momentum into their previous match against Adelaide Strikers. With the ball, they failed to put a check on the flow of runs as Jonathan Wells plundered 73 runs off 49 deliveries to help Strikers to a total of 155. What should’ve been a straightforward chase became extremely complicated as the top order completely folded under the pressure. Harry Thornton picked up four wickets to secure a 23-run win for Adelaide Strikers.
That defeat has left Melbourne Stars at sixth position in the table. Despite their five wins from 12 games, they haven’t been able to capitalize on opportunities enough this season. As a result, they only have 18 points to their name and are six points behind Adelaide Strikers in fourth.
Brisbane Heat, on the other hand, have managed just three wins all season. They’ve all three of their recent fixtures against Melbourne Renegades, Hobart Hurricanes and Adelaide Strikers. Hurricanes took revenge for their defeat in an earlier game by comfortably beating Brisbane Heat by a margin of eight wickets while Strikers struck top form against Heat and defeated them handsomely by 71 runs!
Brisbane Heat are only three points behind their opponents in the table as things stand. They have lost their last three matches on the trot and time seems to be running out for them to make a dash for the playoffs. This match could be pivotal for both sides’ playoff hopes.
As far as the head-to-head record is concerned, Brisbane Heat have the upper hand. They have won nine games while Melbourne Stars have won only on six occasions. Melbourne Stars have been more successful recently with three wins in their last five matches against Brisbane Heat.
Wins: Melbourne Stars 6, Brisbane Heat 9
Last 5 matches: Melbourne Stars 3, Brisbane Heat 2
Brisbane Heat have been winless in their last three fixtures and morale will be extremely low in the camp. The recent mauling at the hands of Adelaide Strikers has seemed to make matters even worse. Melbourne Stars may have had their fair share of struggles with inconsistency this season but they are the favourites for a win here. The last time these two sides met, Stars were victorious by 20 runs and they will be looking to complete the double here.
Melbourne Stars welcomed the return of another star with Marcus Stoinis joining the party in the last match. Although he failed to make much of an impact, much will rely on him and Glenn Maxwell towards the closing stages of the season. Nathan Coulter Nile continues to miss out.
Brisbane Heat are set to undergo a host of changes going into this game. Michael Neser and Mitchell Swepson will return to the side whereas Mujeeb ur Rahman has finished his BBL11 commitments. Pakistan’s Fakhar Zaman will remain squad ahead of his impending departure.
Melbourne Stars will be heavily relied on the talents of Glenn Maxwell, Joe Clarke, Marcus Stoinis and Adam Zampa once again. They’ve missed the services of Maxwell, Clarke, Zampa and Stoinis at crucial junctures in the season due to COVID and their form has peaked and fallen accordingly. With their return, Stars are all set for a late flourish.
Chris Lynn is set to become the fourth player to complete 100 BBL appearances if he plays in this fixture. He will be the first to play all 100 games for the same club.
Glenn Maxwell and Marcus Stoinis are thrilling all-rounders who are dangerous in the T20 format. The duo can take the game away from the opposition at any point and are incredible assets to have.
Chris Lynn would like to celebrate his 100th BBL fixture with a bang. Lynn is the highest scorer in the history of the competition.
Adam Zampa is a premier T20 spinner who has a wealth of international experience with Australia. Zampa has been inconsistent in the Big Bash League this season and COVID-enforced absence has been a big reason behind that. Even when he’s not picking wickets, Zampa bowls tight spells that batsmen find difficult to negotiate with.
Glenn Maxwell is among the most potent all-rounders in the world, especially in T20 cricket. Maxwell marked his return to BBL with a match-winning innings against Melbourne Renegades in the Melbourne Derby.
Hilton Cartwright is the leading scorer for Melbourne Stars as things stand in the Big Bash League. Cartwright has amassed 344 runs at an average of 31.27 and he has a terrific strike rate of 142.14.
Chris Lynn has had an underwhelming campaign but it’s hard to look past him given his ability and repertoire in the Big Bash League. He’s just 49 runs from 3000 BBL reasons and becoming the first to get to that milestone on his 100th BBL game with a half-century will be an amazing accomplishment.
|Nathan McSweeney||lbw Ahmed Danyal||20||20||2||0||100|
|Chris Lynn||c Nathan Coulter-Nile b Glenn Maxwell||28||22||2||1||127.27|
|Ben Duckett||b Adam Zampa||51||42||3||2||121.43|
|Lachlan Pfeffer||c Nick Larkin b Glenn Maxwell||11||14||1||0||78.57|
|Sam Heazlett||c Glenn Maxwell b Nathan Coulter-Nile||9||8||1||0||112.5|
|Jimmy Peirson||not out||15||10||2||0||150|
|James Bazley||c Sam Rainbird b Adam Zampa||5||5||0||0||100|
|Total||(20 Ov, RR: 7.44)||149/6|
|Joe Clarke||c Matthew Kuhnemann b James Bazley||62||36||9||1||172.22|
|Glenn Maxwell||c Chris Lynn b Mark Steketee||37||30||4||0||123.33|
|Hilton Cartwright||not out||16||7||0||2||228.57|
|Marcus Stoinis||not out||29||10||1||3||290|
|Total||(13.5 Ov, RR: 11.11)||150/2|