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Melbourne Stars v Adelaide Strikers: Strikers' class to shine through

Adelaide Strikers have put a run of four straight BBL12 defeats behind them and will be confident of continuing their winning streak against bottom side Melbourne Stars on Thursday.

The Stars have won just twice in 2022/23 and look set to miss out on the playoffs for the third straight season.

In contrast, the Strikers again seem destined for the post-season and wins over Hobart Hurricanes and Melbourne Renegades have got them back on track.

However, the Stars triumphed by eight runs when the pair met on New Year's Eve and will be hoping to rediscover their inspiration as the matches start to run out.

WhatMelbourne Stars v Adelaide Strikers, Big Bash League
WhereMCG, Melbourne
When19:15 (Local time), Thursday 12th January
How to watchSeven, Foxtel and Kayo
OddsMelbourne Stars 13/10, Adelaide Strikers 8/13

Lynn coming to the fore

The Strikers' form this season has been interesting in that the inconsistency of their results has been mirrored by the ups and downs of their key players.

One who has really found his rhythm after a quiet spell is tournament top-scorer Chris Lynn, who has recorded scores of 87, 64 and an unbeaten 69 in his team's last three matches.

That last score on Tuesday in the 20-run win over the Renegades took his tally for the season to 393 and he is getting back to the type of form that saw him finish BBL05 as the competition's leading batter.

Lynn is 11/4 to be Team - Top Batter, slightly longer than captain Matthew Short, who is available at 13/5.

Short scored an unbeaten century as the Strikers chased down the biggest target in BBL history to beat Hobart, riding his luck at times as his team successfully made it to 230.

The skipper also recorded knocks of 84 and 65 in the early part of the tournament. However, despite averaging 44.87, he has struggled for consistency.

With the Strikers possessing the two top batters in the competition and having scored back-to-back totals of over 200, they will feel they can grab a third straight win whether they bat first or second.

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Stars not without their own quality

It has been a tough season for Melbourne Stars and they could be set for the second eighth-place finish in their franchise history.

However, their struggles have not been caused by a lack of endeavour and two Englishmen have been their standout performers.

Bowler Luke Wood has collected 15 wickets, including 5-50 against Perth Scorchers in December and has taken four in his team's last three matches.

Wood is 5/2 to be his Team - Top Bowler but failed to take a wicket in the Stars' previous win over the Strikers.

His efforts have been matched by compatriot Joe Clarke, who is another player to have scored an unbeaten century in a win against the Hurricanes to join Short as the pair with the highest score of 101 in BBL12.

Clarke recorded a decent 42 in the win over the Strikers and after making just 16 in his last three innings to bring his average down to 31.00, needs to rediscover that form.

The 26-year-old is 3/1 to be his Team - Top Batter and will be crucial to his team's hopes.

More rounded Strikers should have too much

Even so, the Strikers look the more complete outfit with Henry Thornton, who famously took 5-3 in the record win over Sydney Thunder to contribute to his tournament tally of 16 wickets, leading their attack.

Thornton has been part of his team's rotation policy for recent matches and after sitting out the win over the Renegades, is set to come back in.

Wes Agar took 2-26 in Tuesday's victory to move onto 13 wickets for the competition, while the likes of Short and Colin de Grandhomme have also been in the wickets, namely the former, who has nine scalps at an average of 17.77.

Short is 6/1 to be Player of the Match for the fourth time in this season's BBL, with Lynn also 6/1 and both seem well-placed to guide their team to success.

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