Faulkner to miss key 'Canes clash
Allrounder ruled out of Thursday's showdown with Melbourne Renegades due to injury
6 February 2019, 03:24 PM AEST
James Faulkner will miss the Hobart Hurricanes' blockbuster KFC BBL clash with the Melbourne Renegades on Thursday, with the allrounder ruled out of the game at Blundstone Arena due to injury.
Faulkner was a notable absentee from the squad of 13 named by the top-ranked Hurricanes as they look to manage his knee ahead of finals, with Jarrod Freeman also omitted for the match against the third-ranked Renegades.
There are two changes from the group who suffered a seven-wicket loss to Adelaide Strikers in Launceston last week, with new international signing Qais Ahmad coming in while Riley Meredith has returned from illness.
A win against the Renegades will guarantee Hobart finish the regular season on top of the ladder and earn the right to host a home semi-final.
"It would have been nice to get straight back out after (the loss) the other night but we've had a bit of time off and got back into training today, we'll have a top up tomorrow and hit the ground running," Hurricanes skipper Matthew Wade said on Tuesday.
"It's pretty simple for us, win one more game and we'll finish on top.
"We'd love to have a home final and it would be great for our fans and for us to be able to play at Bellerive but you only have to finish in the top four and anything can happen from there."
Afghan teenage leg-spin sensation Ahmad arrived in Australia earlier this week and was due to train with Hobart for the first time on Wednesday.
Another absentee for the Hurricanes is Australian Test skipper Tim Paine, who is free to rejoin his BBL club for the end of the season but who is potentially more likely to enjoy some well-earned R&R after a busy summer.
"At this stage I think he's going to take some time off and concentrate on red ball," Wade said of Paine.
"It's a good opportunity for him to have some time off. More than physically, mentally over a summer of Test cricket it can take it out of you especially when you're wicketkeeping and you're captain.
"It's always good to have some time off and I think he'll really appreciate that coming into the back half of the Shield season."
Meanwhile Test opener Marcus Harris has returned to the Renegades squad following the end of the second Test against Sri Lanka, while Sam Harper has retained his place with Will Sutherland still recovering from a back injury.
Harper is the Renegades' leading run-scorer for BBL|08 with 279 runs despite starting the season without a Big Bash contract.
He came into the Renegades squad as a replacement player for Aaron Finch and has been able to remain in their ranks since with Finch and Harris on national duties.
Hurricanes squad: Matthew Wade (c), Qais Ahmad, Jofra Archer, George Bailey, Alex Doolan, Caleb Jewell, Ben McDermott, Riley Meredith, Simon Milenko, David Moody, Tom Rogers, Clive Rose, D'Arcy Short
Renegades squad: Aaron Finch (c), Cameron Boyce, Dan Christian, Tom Cooper, Harry Gurney, Sam Harper, Marcus Harris, Mackenzie Harvey, Jon Holland, Mohammad Nabi, Kane Richardson, Chris Tremain, Jack Wildermuth