Friday, January 24

Hobart Hurricanes vs Sydney Thunder (6:10pm AEDT)
Daniel Sams 2+ Wickets ($2.70)

Fresh off a season-saving win, the Hurricanes return home and are offered another good opportunity to keep the campaign alive when they line up opposite the Sydney Thunder.

Its largely been a season to forget for the Canes, but a rare win over the Melbourne Renegades on Tuesday means that they are still a mathematical chance of finishing the regular season in the top five, albeit extremely slim. Nothing short of a win here will be necessary.

The Thunder have mixed their form quite a bit since the beginning of the year and have lost two of their last three. There is no doubt that this match looms as a far better opportunity for them than their last-start hit-out in Perth, but it’s still going to be tough. I’m staying away from head-to-head betting, as a result.

Perth Scorchers vs Adelaide Strikers (9:10pm AEDT)
Strikers to Win ($2)

The match of the day will take place in the nation’s west tonight and a key meeting between the third-placed Adelaide Strikers and fourth-placed Perth Scorchers.

The Scorchers’ slow start to the season is well and truly in the rear-view mirror and they now loom as a typically dangerous force in BBL 9. An easy win over the Thunder on Tuesday puts them in good stead to make it two in a row, particularly in returning home.

The Strikers have bounced back into form following a midseason slump and they look to be a legitimate title contender in their own right. A win here would go a long way towards locking in a spot in the top three.

Thursday, January 23

Brisbane Heat vs Sydney Sixers (7:10pm AEDT)
Sixers to Win ($2.10)

Following the worst collapse in all of BBL 9, the Brisbane Heat will attempt to reverse their fortunes at home on Thursday but face a big task in the form of the Sydney Sixers.

Absolutely cruising at 0/80, the Heat looked on track for an easy win over the last-placed Renegades, but lost ten wickets for only thirty more runs, in what was an embarrassing evening in front of their home fans. They be eager to atone with a win, but everyone will need to stand up.

The Sixers have continued to get the result, regardless of how ugly they look a lot and they enter this off the back of an impressive win over the league-leading Stars. They are currently available at odds of $2.10 to win this match and I am more than happy to be with them.

Wednesday, January 22

Adelaide Strikers vs Melbourne Stars (7:10pm AEDT)
Stars to Win ($1.80)

An interesting match looks like materialising in Adelaide tonight when the Strikers, who have returned to excellent form recently, take on the league-leading Melbourne Stars, who are fresh off a rare loss.

The Strikers dip in form earlier this month now appears to be a memory and they are seeking a third win in succession when they step out tonight. The return of prodigal son Travis Head has clearly had an enormous effect, and the side will be confident of taking the W and ultimately keeping pressure on at the top of the table.

The Stars were potentially undone by the inclement weather and the shortening of their match with the Sixers on Monday, but a loss is a loss and they will need to regroup immediately to overcome this formed opponent. I think they will.

Tuesday, January 21

Melbourne Renegades vs Hobart Hurricanes (7:10pm AEDT)
Renegades to Win & Boland 1+ Wicket ($2.64)

Bragging rights are on the line when cellar dwellers the Renegades and Hurricanes do battle in Melbourne this evening.

It’s obviously very much a case of too little, too late for the Renegades, but they are two in a row leading into this match and are offered an excellent opportunity to make it three at the expense of the second-to-last Hurricanes.

The Canes are down and out, and the end of the season simply cannot arrive quickly enough. Three wins and seven losses is how the ledger currently leads, and it’s tough imagining them adding another ‘W’ at this point.

Monday, January 20

Sydney Sixers vs Melbourne Stars (6:40pm AEDT)
Stoinis Stars Top Runscorer ($3.25)

It’s another top of the table clash in Sydney tonight when the Sixers host the rampaging Melbourne Stars.

The Sixers, while good for the most part, have been reasonably inconsistent of late and enter this match winless in their last three. They have actually been leapfrogged by the Adelaide Strikers and are at risk of falling further down the table with another loss here, though this remains an extremely difficult prospect.

The Stars have been nothing short of outstanding and they remain fitting favourites to win the whole thing. Rarely do they look troubled and it would take a braver man than me to tip against them, at this point.

Perth Scorchers vs Sydney Thunder (9:10pm AEDT)
Scorchers to Win & Richardson 1+ Wicket ($2.43)

An intriguing match looks like playing out between the fifth-placed Scorchers and fourth-placed Thunder at the home of the former tonight.

The Scorchers’ smart return to form has seemingly been stemmed, as they have dropped their last two matches to the Stars. There is no doubt that this looms as an easier task for them, and they will prove difficult to beat at home.

The Thunder have been pretty hard to trust from a betting perspective. They became the first side to lose to Renegades, but then beat crosstown rivals the Sixers. Surely, this will prove too great a task for them.

Sunday, January 19

Hobart Hurricanes vs Adelaide Strikers (2:45pm AEDT)
Khan 2+ Wickets ($1.90)

The first of two Sunday matches will see the Hobart Hurricanes host the Adelaide Strikers.

The season is all but over for the Canes and they are playing for nothing more than pride. They’ve lacked the killer blow that they harboured in BBL 8, but there’s no doubt that the struggling Strikers loom as a very beatable opponent for them.

The Strikers’ looked one of the better prospects early on, but they too have fallen off the perch and simply need to win this match to stay in touch with the top four. They deserve favouritism but I give both sides a genuine shot of winning this match and I am subsequently staying away from head-to-head betting.

Brisbane Heat vs Melbourne Renegades (7:10pm AEDT)
Pattinson 2+ Wickets ($2.40)

The Brisbane Heat return home and another excellent opportunity at competition points await, in the form of the last-placed Melbourne Renegades.

The debut of the legendary AB de Villiers had an immediate effect when the Heat comfortably defeated the Strikers on Tuesday, but there is no denying that was their best all-round performance with bat and ball. A repeat of that effort would see them far too good for the Renegades.

An elusive win finally fell the way of the Renegades at their tenth attempt on Wednesday night. That result is sure to have filled their sails with wind, but there’s no doubt that they face a big rise in class in the form of Brisbane away from home. I think they’ll find it extremely difficult to make it two in a row.

Saturday, January 18

Melbourne Stars vs Perth Scorchers (2:40pm AEDT)
Stoinis Top Runscorer (Stars) - $3

One of the better matches in recent memory looks like playing out between the Melbourne Stars and Perth Scorchers at the home of the former this afternoon.

The Stars have been nothing short of outstanding in BBL 9 and this really does look like their best opportunity to win a maiden title to date. Nearly every player has stood up to be counted and that has translated into nine wins from ten matches.

The Scorchers have experienced something of a resurgence leading into this match, however they did drop the reverse leg of this match in Perth on Wednesday night. It’s tough imagining them reversing that result in Melbourne.

Sydney Thunder vs Sydney Sixers (7:10pm AEDT)
Sixers to Win ($1.80)

Another Sydney Derby will be played in the Saturday primetime slot and understandably, it’s the Sixers who are set to start the match as favourites.

It’s been a largely excellent campaign for the Sixers, but they still tend to do things wrong and more often than not, they’ve probably be saved by misfiring opponents. They didn’t have the answers for the Stars in last week’s top of the table clash, but they’ll enter this refreshed and have bright prospects of beating the Thunder again.

The Thunder have been extremely inconsistent and appear to have fallen into another slump. They’ve lost four of their last five, which included a particularly damning performance that saw them become the first team to lose to the Renegades in BBL  9.

Friday, January 17

Adelaide Strikers vs Brisbane Heat (3:40pm AEDT)
Khan 2+ Wickets ($2)

The reverse leg of Tuesday afternoon’s one-sided affair will play out between the Strikers and Heat and the Adelaide Oval this afternoon.

The Strikers were awful earlier this week. They failed to get anything of a foothold at The Gabba and were lucky to break triple figures. They will need to improve tenfold if they are any hope of reversing the result, but they have well and truly fallen out of form and it’s tough imagining them winning.

The Heat were the opposite of the Strikers in Brisbane (obviously) and loom as a serious BBL 9 contender. AB de Villiers looked excellent in his Heat debut, while James Pattinson was virtually unplayable.

I’m expecting a slightly better performance from the Strikers at home, but a similar result.

Thursday, January 16

Sydney Sixers vs Hobart Hurricanes (7:10pm AEDT)
Dwarshuis 2+ Wickets ($2.40)

Another excellent opportunity awaits the Sydney Sixers when the Hobart Hurricanes arrive in town this evening.

For the most part, it has been an excellent season for the men in magenta, though they do enter this match off the back of a convincing loss to fellow title contenders the Melbourne Stars. To their credit, they actually didn’t look bad and their effort would have been enough to defeat most other rivals.

The Hurricanes have been extremely disappointing and enter this off the back of another damning loss, this time to the Perth Scorchers. That was their third in succession and it’s tough imagining them bouncing back into the winner’s stall here.

Wednesday, January 15

Sydney Thunder vs Melbourne Renegades (6:10pm AEDT)
Hales 'Over' 25.5 Runs ($1.83)

The Sydney Thunder are offered a terrific opportunity at points when they host the winless Renegades this evening.

The Thunder have seemingly snapped their poor run of form, thanks largely to an impressive partnership from Alex Hales and Usman Khawaja that proved pivotal too much for the Hobart Hurricanes. In theory, this is an easier task and they are up to making it two in a row.

There isn’t a lot to say about the 0-9 Renegades at this point of the season, other than the end cannot come quickly enough. Even one win would salvage some credibility.

Perth Scorchers vs Melbourne Stars (9:10pm AEDT)
Stoinis Top Runscorer (Stars) - $3.50

One of the better matches in recent memory looks like materialising in the nation’s west tonight.

Following an extremely slow start, the Scorchers have continued to improve with each effort and enter this match third on the ladder, having won four of their last five matches. They were far too good for the Hurricanes in Perth on Monday night, and there’s little doubt that they’ll be better in front of their parochial home crowd.

The Melbourne Stars meanwhile have been in a league of their own. Nine matches for eight wins and just the one loss and rarely do they look threatened. Marcus Stoinis is in career-best form and while I’m sure it’ll be hard to replicate his 147 not out vs the Sixers, I’m confident he’s capable of producing another enormous innings.