Hungry Harvey sets sights on match-winning knocks

Gades' 21-year-old shining light says his next challenge is to convert one of his fifties into a big hundred and help turn his side's season around

One of the shining lights to an otherwise dismal first half of the season for the Melbourne Renegades has been the form of young opener Mackenzie Harvey.

While registering a first-ball duck thanks to a spectacular catch in their last game, the left-hander tops the run-scorers list for his side from their six games and scored his maiden KFC BBL half-century against the Adelaide Strikers in their season opener.

With 29 Big Bash matches under his belt, and as a regular fixture at the top of the order for the Renegades across the past two seasons, it's hard to believe that Harvey is still only 21.

So far this year he's played with the maturity that's been lacking from some of his older teammates, with the Renegades having slumped to 1-5 at the halfway point of the season.

Harvey defies clinical Heat attack for second fifty

The former Australia Under-19 captain told that scoring runs but losing was making him hungrier to be the player who can go big consistently.

He doesn't have to look far for inspiration either, with the Renegades having the best seats in the house in their last game as Hobart Hurricanes opener Ben McDermott whacked 127 at Marvel Stadium, becoming the first batter to score centuries in back-to-back BBL innings.

"That's the one thing as an opener, you feel like you've got the best chance to try and get that hundred," he said.

"I try and focus more on the team stuff and if I can make runs and the team's winning, then that's pretty ideal in my books.

"It's nice having the runs there but if the team was winning it'd be a lot better."

Harvey's 71 not out against the Brisbane Heat and 56 in their only win over the Strikers has made him the only Renegades batter to score multiple half-centuries this season.

He is also only eight runs away from going past his tally from last year at just the halfway mark of the season.

The 21-year-old said it was the extra year of experience that had helped elevate his game to another level.

"It's more just being confident in my own game, I'm starting to figure out how I want to play and if I can keep implementing that into the games moving forward, then hopefully we can try and get a few more wins on the board," Harvey said.

"I feel pretty comfortable with my game, obviously there's things to improve on but overall feeling pretty good, seeing the ball well."

While Harvey has made five Marsh One-Day Cup appearances for his state, with a top score of 55 coming in the last game before the BBL|11 break, he is yet to break into Victoria's Sheffield Shield side.

"If I can keep making runs then hopefully it's (the debut) around the corner," he said. "But our Sheffield Shield side is pretty strong as it is, so it's a pretty tough one to crack into."

Freak! Harvey flies to nab 'catch of the season'

Harvey has also now had the experience of opening with Australia's T20 World Cup winning skipper Aaron Finch on a couple of occasions this season, as well as in BBL|10 and BBL|08, which he said helped make him more relaxed at the crease.

"Batting with Finchy, you always feel calm out there," he added. "Just knowing that he's had the experience there and trying to calm us down if we are in a pretty tough situation is really handy to have at the other end.

"With him not being captain this year and 'Maddo' (Nic Maddinson) taking over, it's almost freed him up a little bit to just play the game rather than focusing too much on the captaincy side of things, which I think helped him a fair bit."

The Renegades face two-time defending champions Sydney Sixers in Coffs Harbour on New Year's Day as they look to avoid six consecutive losses.