The 28th game of the 2019-20 Big Bash League will be played between Melbourne Stars and Sydney Thunder at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Melbourne.
The match starts at 07:10 PM local time (08:10 AM GMT) (01:40 PM IST). It can be watched live on Sony Six and Sony Six HD. Live streaming will be available on Sony LIV.
Match Preview for Dream11 Fantasy:
With five wins in their opening six encounters, Melbourne Stars are at the top of the pile and can do nothing wrong. The Glenn Maxwell-led unit will be looking to further consolidate their position at the top when they take on Sydney Thunder at the MCG on Wednesday. The Stars come into this game on the back of a comprehensive eight-wicket win over the Renegades in the Melbourne derby.
The win was spearheaded by an all-round bowling performance led by Dale Steyn’s opening burst of 2-16 backed by the spin duo of Adam Zampa [2-19] and Sandeep Lamichhane [3-26], who claimed five wickets between them to restrict the defending champions to 9-142; a target that was chased down with ease thanks to Marcus Stoinis’ unbeaten 55-ball 68 and Glenn Maxwells’s 32-ball 40.
Sydney Thunder, on the other hand, has lost back-to-back encounters, putting their campaign in a mid-season crisis. Their losing streak started against Stars when the duo of Nick Larkin  and Marcus Stoinis  successfully overhauled their total of 143. That loss was followed by another 16-run defeat at the hands of Brisbane Heat after they failed to chase down 76 runs in five overs [DLS] in a rain-affected encounter.
A partly cloudy day is expected in Melbourne on Wednesday. But there is nothing to worry about, as the chances of rain are expected to be minimal. According to the weather report, the sun will continue will play hide and seek throughout the day and the temperatures are expected to fluctuate between 17 and 23 degrees Celsius while the humidity will be around 60%.
In the only game played at the MCG, the spinners had a field day as the pair of Adam Zampa and Sandeep Lamichhane claimed five wickets between them. That said, Marcus Stoinis and Glenn Maxwell showed that it wasn’t that difficult a track to bat on.
Average first innings score:– 142 [In the only game played at the venue this season]
Record of chasing teams: Won – 1, Lost – 0
Injury and Availability:
Melbourne Stars have made two changes to their squad that beat the Renegades. With Dale Steyn no longer available for selection, the door opens for one of the finds of the season- Haris Rauf. Apart from that, Hilton Cartwright has been added to the 13-man squad in place of Merlo.
As for the Thunder, Nathan McAndrew and Jonathan Cook make their way back into the squad.
Probable Playing XIs:
Nic Maddinson, Marcus Stoinis, Nick Larkin, Glenn Maxwell (c), Peter Handscomb (wk), Ben Dunk, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Sandeep Lamichhane, Daniel Worrall, Adam Zampa, Haris Rauf
Bench – Hilton Cartwright, Clint Hinchliffe
Alex Hales, Usman Khawaja, Callum Ferguson (C), Matthew Gilkes (WK), Alex Ross, Chris Morris, Daniel Sams, Chris Green/Jonathan Cook, Arjun Nair, Nathan McAndrew, Chris Tremain/Brendan Doggett
Bench – Chris Tremain/Brendan Doggett, Chris Green/Jonathan Cook
Melbourne Stars- The trio of Marcus Stoinis [281 runs at 70.25], who has stroked back-to-back half-centuries, skipper Glenn Maxwell [169 runs at 42.25] and Nick Larkin, who scored a match-winning half-century the last these two sides played each other, will once again be the key to their fortunes.
With Dale Steyn no longer available, Haris Rauf will get another chance of improving his already great BBL 2019 numbers- 10 wickets in 3 matches at an average of 7.10 and an economy of 5.91. Along with Rauf, the duo of Adam Zampa [9 wickets at 16.55] and Sandeep Lamichhane [6 wickets at 18.00] will be the key.
Sydney Thunder- The trio of Callum Ferguson [253 runs at 50.6], Alex Ross [134 runs at 33.5] and Alex Hales [142 runs at 28.4] will have to step-up if they are to revive their sides’ fortunes in the season. As far as bowling is concerned, Daniel Sams, who is the leading wicket-taker of the tournament- 14- will be the key alongside Chris Morris [8 wickets] and Arjun Nair [6 wickets].
Captain and Vice-Captain Selection:
Captain – Marcus Stoinis, Callum Ferguson, Glenn Maxwell
Vice-Captain – Daniel Sams, Alex Hales, Sandeep Lamichhane
Suggested Playing XI No.1 for Fantasy Cricket:
Keeper – Matthew Gilkes
Batters – Callum Ferguson (VC), Alex Hales, Nick Larkin
All-Rounders – Chris Morris, Daniel Sams, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis (C)
Bowlers – Arjun Nair, Sandeep Lamichhane, Haris Rauf
Suggested Playing XI No.2 for Fantasy Cricket:
Keeper – Peter Handscomb
Batters – Usman Khawaja, Alex Ross, Alex Hales (C), Nic Maddinson
All-Rounders – Chris Morris, Daniel Sams (VC), Glenn Maxwell
Bowlers – Daniel Worrall, Sandeep Lamichhane, Nathan Coulter-Nile
The track at the MCG tends to slow down in the second half, and the spinners could come in really handy. Hence opting for the likes of Sandeep Lamichhane in your Grand League team can be a good punt.
Melbourne Stars is expected to come out as the winners.
*Disclaimer: This team is based on the understanding, analysis and instinct of the author. While selecting your team, consider the points mentioned and make your own decision.
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