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Friday's Big Bash League previews: Strikers in need of a boost

The regular season of Big Bash 2022/23 is inching close to conclusion and there are two more games on Friday as the battle for playoff places intensifies.

The Perth Scorchers are Adelaide-bound to face the Strikers, while after that the Brisbane Heat are hosts to the Hobart Hurricanes. Time is running out and wins for those in playoff contention are now priceless.

Scorchers still the team to beat

WhatAdelaide Strikers v Perth Scorchers 
WhereAdelaide Oval, Adelaide
When16.30, Friday 20th January, 2023
How to watchFox Cricket, Kayo
OddsAdelaide Strikers 6/5, Perth Scorchers 4/6

The defending champion Perth Scorchers and the Sydney Sixers have been the two standout teams in the 12th edition of the tournament, and they sit first and second respectively with 18 and 17 points each from 12 games. 

The table-topping Scorchers are 7/5 to retain their Big Bash crown, with the Sixers at 7/4 and the fourth-placed Adelaide Strikers as big as 20/1.

This is a tough test for an Adelaide side seeking to avoid a fourth successive loss and they are 6/5 To Win Match, with the Scorchers favoured at 4/6.

Recent history doesn't bode the underdogs, with three of their last four encounters with Perth ending in defeat. They are also facing a side full of confidence on the back of eight wins in ten lately.

The overall head-to-head favours Perth by just 11-10 wins and they won the reverse fixture on Boxing Day by three wickets.

Strikers need to arrest the decline

Having at one stage in the season looked nailed on certainties to make the playoffs, the Strikers now face a real fight to qualify after suffering three straight defeats.

Those reverses came against the Melbourne Stars by nine wickets and Brisbane Heat by 17 runs last week, while on Tuesday the high-flying Sydney Sixers put them away by 59 runs. They'll be hoping skipper Peter Siddle is fit enough to return now. He is a 7/2 chance in the Top Team Batter market for this clash at The Oval. 

With the Sydney Thunder, Hobart Hurricanes and Brisbane Heat all around them in the standings, the Strikers go into clash with the ladder leaders knowing a positive outcome could change their playoff hopes dramatically. 

Scorchers unlikely to donate help 

The Perth Scorchers remain top of the standings and on course to be top seeds in the finals following a dominant seven-wicket win over Hobart Hurricanes on Wednesday and they are unlikely to let off the gas now. 

That was a ninth win in 12 games in BBL12 for the reigning champions and guaranteed Perth of their spot in the finals, however, they aren't yet assured of being top seeds that is bad news for the stricken Strikers.

Peter Hatzoglou and David Payne may push for inclusion after missing the win over the Hurricanes but Aaron Hardie was the standout performer in that win and is 10/3 to be Top Team Batter now. 

Related Cricket News

Sydney Thunder v Melbourne Renegades preview: Battle for play-off phase intensifies

Perth Scorchers v Hobart Hurricanes preview: Table toppers face tough test

Rallying Heat leaving it late 

WhatBrisbane Heat v Hobart Hurricanes
WhereThe Gabba, Brisbane
When20.00, Friday 20th January, 2023
How to watchFox Cricket, Kayo
OddsBrisbane Heat 11/10, Hobart Hurricanes 8/11

Successive wins have lifted Brisbane Heat off the foot of the table but they'll need another big effort to overcome the 8/11 Hurricane at The Gabba and keep momentum in their sails.

Matt Renshaw is a player taking the eye in BBL12. The talented up-and-comer batter hasn't played much because of other cricket commitments, but he already has 182 runs thanks to a massive 90* in a win against the Stars. Renshaw is a 9/2 chance to be Top Team Batter for Brisbane here. 

The hosts may take some encouragement from seeing Hobart's loss against the Perth Scorchers.

The usually reliable Tim David only picked up 20 runs, while Ben McDermott and Matthew Wade were called on to try and add to the score. 

David's batting style means he is likely to be either scoring heavily or out for very little, but such is the risk with T20 cricket. He's priced at 4/1 to rebound with Top Team Batter performance now. 

Heat recovery may falter

Renshaw's recent form, allied to excellence from Michael Neser with the ball in hand, have put some pep back in the step of Brisbane. They'll be determined to keep their good run going but the incoming Hurricanes are still well-placed much further up the table and are 8/15 for Top 5 Finish. 

Their possible batting/bowling line-ups are stronger on paper and coach Adam Griffith will expected to find a sixth win of the season here, enough to level up their win/loss record after a dozen games and keep them in the hunt for the playoffs.

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