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Adelaide Strikers v Hobart Hurricanes Preview: Hurricanes eye quickfire double

Adelaide Oval is the venue for the Big Bash League showdown between the Adelaide Strikers and the Hobart Hurricanes on Thursday, with the hosts desperate to get their season back on track.

Having opened up with three consecutive victories, the Strikers have now lost four in a row and are in danger of missing out on the end-of-season play-offs.

Their last reverse came at the hands of the Hurricanes on Monday, when the home side powered to a seven-wicket victory at the Bellerive Oval.

That win lifted the Hurricanes level on points with the Strikers with a game in hand, with Hobart now having followed each of their three defeats with a victory in their next game.

WhatAdelaide Strikers v Hobart Hurricanes
WhereAdelaide Oval
When18:45, Thursday 5th January 2023
How to watchChannel 7, Kayo, Foxtel
OddsAdelaide Strikers 1/1, Hobart Hurricanes 4/5

Strikers' season falling apart

The Strikers seemed to have carried on from where they left off last season by winning their opening three fixtures in the BBL this season.

Last year they made it all the way through to the Challenger match and a repeat of that success appeared to be well within reach as the Sydney Sixers and the Sydney Thunder (twice) were convincingly defeated.

However, since then the Strikers have fallen to defeat at the hands of the Brisbane Heat, Perth Scorchers, Melbourne Stars and most recently the Hurricanes.

The first three of those losses were by narrow margins, two of less than ten runs and the other inside the final over of the match, however, it was the defeat to the Hurricanes last time out which will have raised major concerns.

Hobart chased down 178 to win with almost three overs to spare, meaning that they will be the team heading into the reverse fixture full of confidence.

Head coach Jason Gillespie is left trying to find answers about how to engineer a recovery and has made a few alterations to his squad.

Jake Weatherald and Cameron Boyce are back in the fold after injury, but skipper Peter Siddle has been ruled out with a back problem.

A major boost comes with Henry Thornton being recalled after being rested for the clash in Hobart, with the paceman the leading wicket-taker in the competition this season with 16.

Thornton is 11/4 to be Team - Top Bowler, while leg-spinner Rashid Khan, who taken just six wickets in seven matches, is priced at 9/4.

With the bat, the Strikers also have the tournament leader, with Chris Lynn having 260 runs to his name after making 87 in Hobart on Monday and he is 5/6 to make 28.5 runs in the Player Performance market.

Hurricanes still searching for consistency

With their season record reading LWLWLW, it is obvious that consistency of performance is what the Hurricanes need to improve on to ensure a play-off place.

In truth their season could be over already, as two of their three victories have come by narrow eight-run margins, but the seven-wicket thumping of the Strikers a few days ago showed what they are capable of when they get things right.

Their batting line-up looks strong on paper, but the likes of Ben McDermott, D'Arcy Short and Tim David have yet to hit top form.

Veteran Matthew Wade has passed 50 in two of his last four innings and is 10/3 to be Team - Top Batter on Thursday, with McDermott the market leader at 11/4.

Explosive right-hander McDermott made 17, 0 and 17 in his first three innings in the BBL this season and the Hurricanes will be hoping that his 53 against the Strikers earlier in the week will spark greater things in the final few games of the campaign.

Prediction

Recent results between these two sides have been somewhat predictable, with their last three meetings all ending in seven-wicket victories for the home side.

The Strikers are 1/1 to get back to winning ways on Thursday, but a comprehensive victory for the home side looks like a very unlikely outcome.

It may well be a close contest, but the momentum is with the Hurricanes at the moment and they will feel that they can complete the double over the Strikers.

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