The defending champions Northern Knights come into the grand final on the back of two consecutive defeats in the league phase. The Knights lost only three of the ten matches they played in the round-robin stage and had a six-match winning streak. However, the two losses might not affect the Knights who have made as many as six changes from their previous game. The availability of international players on their side will make them strong.
Tim Southee, who had a decent T20I series against India recently, will join the Knights for the final and is in line for his first Super Smash game of the season. They will be up against the Central Stags who have posted some of the biggest totals in the season. The Stags are coming from the Elimination Final where they defeated Auckland who were on a 5-match winning streak. Blair Tickner could feature in the final after missing the Eliminator due to an ankle injury he suffered during a training session.
The Final of the Super Smash T20 2018-19 will be played between Northern Knights and Central Stags at the Seddon Park in Hamilton.
The match starts at 4:10 PM local time (3:10 AM GMT) (8:40 AM IST).
The game will be live on Star Sports Select 1 and Star Sports Select 1 HD. Streaming available on Hotstar.
The Seddon Park in Hamilton is one of the finest venues to play the T20 cricket. The short boundaries at the venue help the chasing teams but the last five matches have been won by teams batting first. However, four of those five games have been won by a margin of fewer than ten runs.
Average 1st innings score: 194 (Last four Twenty20 matches)
Record of chasing teams: Won – 0, Lost – 5
Nick Kelly, Tim Seifert, Dean Brownlie (C), Daryl Mitchell, Corey Anderson, Brett Hampton, Mitchell Santner, Scott Kuggeleijn, Tim Southee, Kyle Abbott, Ish Sodhi.
Bench – Daniel Flynn, Neil Wagner.
In – Ish Sodhi, Tim Seifert, Scott Kuggeleijn, Daryl Mitchell, Tim Southee, Mitchell Santner
Out – Joe Walker, BJ Watling, Joe Carter, Peter Bocock, Tarun Nethula, Zak Gibson.
George Worker, Will Young, Dean Foxcroft, Tom Bruce (C), Dean Cleaver (WK), Doug Bracewell, Kieran Noema-Barnett/Ajaz Patel, Blair Tickner, Seth Rance, Adam Milne, Ben Wheeler.
Bench – Bevan Small.
In – Blair Tickner.
Doug Bracewell, Ish Sodhi, Tim Seifert, Scott Kuggeleijn, Daryl Mitchell, Tim Southee and Mitchell Santner are available for this fixture after been released from the New Zealand squad. Blair Tickner has passed the fitness Test ahead of the crucial game. Josh Clarkson will miss out due to injuries for Central Stags.
Before joining the New Zealand T20I squad, Daryl Mitchell was in top form in the Super Smash. He scored 318 runs from nine games with two fifties and bagged five wickets. Mitchell picked up a couple of crucial wickets in the decider T20I against India.
Captain and Vice-Captain Selection:
Captain options – Daryl Mitchell, Will Young, Tim Seifert
Vice-Captain options – Dean Foxcroft, Tom Bruce, Dean Brownlie
Alternatives – Nick Kelly, George Worker, Corey Anderson
Playing XI #1 for Head to Head/Small Leagues:
Keeper – Tim Seifert (VC)
Batters – George Worker, Nick Kelly, Will Young, Dean Brownlie
All-Rounders – Daryl Mitchell (C), Dean Foxcroft, Corey Anderson
Bowlers – Scott Kuggeleijn, Adam Milne, Blair Tickner
Playing XI #2 for Grand Leagues/Mega Leagues:
Keeper – Tim Seifert
Batters – Tom Bruce, Brett Hampton, Will Young (VC), Dean Brownlie
All-Rounders – Dean Foxcroft (VC), Daryl Mitchell, Mitchell Santner
Bowlers – Tim Southee, Adam Milne, Blair Tickner
Going by the batting positions, the likes of Will Young, Dean Brownlie, Nick Kelly and George Worker will be perfect from the batsmen’s category. Tom Bruce can also be a considerable option while Brett Hampton’s position is unpredictable.
Northern Knights are expected to defend their title but could face a tough fight from the Central Stags.
*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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- Daryl Mitchell
- Dean Foxcroft
- George Worker
- Mitchell Santner
- Scott Kuggeleijn
- Tim Seifert
- Tim Southee
- Tom Bruce
- Central Stags
- New Zealand
- Northern Knights
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