CLT20 bite-size preview: Hobart Hurricanes

Australia

The Big Bash League has done wonders for the veritable reinvention of domestic Twenty20 cricket in Australia, exemplified by the Hobart Hurricanes' rise through the ranks.

<b>Brief Overview:</b> The Big Bash League has done wonders for the veritable reinvention of domestic Twenty20 cricket in Australia, exemplified by the Hobart Hurricanes' rise through the ranks. Arguably stronger than the Perth Scorchers and considerably more decisive than the Adelaide Strikers, the Hurricanes can emulate the New South Wales Blues and Sydney Sixers' respective title success in 2009 and 2012.

<b>Key Strength:</b> The very competitive nature of the Big Bash League insists some very best are separated from the rest. The Hurricanes have well and truly earned this status – and can be considered more formidable than plenty of other franchises coming to India on the back of considerably less challenging domestic campaigns.

<b>Probable Weakness:</b> Key batsmen Aiden Blizzard and Ben Dunk came and went through various editions of the IPL without much gusto, suggesting the low and slow conditions encountered across India are a collective step too far for a pair reared on hard, fast and true pitches in Tasmania and surrounds.

<b>Batsman To Watch:</b> Freed from multiple finger injuries and inspired by the captaincy in the absence of the veteran George Bailey, Tim Paine is gradually regaining the heights that brought Australian Test, ODI and T20I selection in 2009 through 2011.

<b>Bowler To Watch:</b> Pakistan all-rounder Shoaib Malik captained the Sialkot Stallions in the 2012 Champions League Twenty20 – and has since sought greener pastures in Hobart. His wily off-spin will trouble many batsmen primed for quick bowling.

<b>Squad:</b> Tim Paine (captain), Jon Wells, Evan Gulbis, Xavier Doherty, Ben Hilfenhaus, Dom Michael, Sam Rainbird, Travis Birt, Doug Bollinger, Aiden Blizzard, Cameron Boyce, Joe Mennie, Ben Laughlin, Ben Dunk, Shoaib Malik.

<b>Toughest Fixture:</b> A tough encounter against the calypso flair of the Barbados Tridents, who Malik represented in the Caribbean Premier League, will require all the inside information available at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium in Mohali on 28 September.

<b>They Said:</b> "Playing in front of the crowds over there is going to be a pretty good experience. It is going to be a pretty hard tournament with the players and the teams were are competing against but should be really good fun." – leg-spinner Cameron Boyce.

<b>Cricket365's Prediction:</b> Seventh

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