Scorchers, Sixers lose key men for summer

Behrendorff and O'Keefe both set for lengthy spells on the sidelines, ending respective BBL campaigns

Last summer's champions Perth Scorchers and runners-up Sydney Sixers have each suffered significant blows to their BBL|07 aspirations, with Jason Behrendorff and Steve O'Keefe ruled out of their respective team's campaigns. 

The two squads from opposite sides of the country have had contrasting fortunes in the tournament already, with the Scorchers top of the ladder courtesy of four wins from four, and the Sixers still to register a point after as many matches. 

But neither side had any cause for celebration with the latest news following their clash in Perth on Monday night. 

Scorchers and WA quick Behrendorff hasn't bowled since a Sheffield Shield match last November, and broke the news of his season-ending back injury - the same issue that has plagued him in recent years - to his fans via Instagram. 

"It comes with great sadness to say that unfortunately I won’t be taking any part in the current BBL season" the 27-year-old wrote. "To say I am disappointed is an understatement, particularly given I missed last season as well with injury.

"It’s well known, but in short I’ve had an ongoing issue with my back that flared recently and I’ve been managing it since the Sheffield Shield season. I was really hoping and expecting to be right and ready to go for the Big Bash, but my back is still giving me grief."

Behrendorff blitz leaves India reeling

Behrendorff was picked in Australia's T20I squad last October for the tour of India, and turned heads on the subcontinent with a brilliant display of fast bowling to capture 4-21. 

As such, the left-arm quick has put his name forward for the IPL auction, which takes place on January 27. 

"I loved being in India for the recent T20 tour with the Aussie boys," he added, "and if I’m lucky enough to get picked up I’m sure it will be a great experience!"

Steve O'Keefe off with leg injury

O'Keefe meanwhile, had his tournament curtailed after an MRI scan revealed a high grade ankle sprain, which he suffered in the field at the WACA Ground on Monday night. 

The injury will require surgery, which he will undergo this evening. 

"Steve O'Keefe has suffered a high grade syndesmosis injury," said Cricket NSW Doctor John Orchard. "He is seeing a surgeon today with the likelihood of an operation night.

"Steve will miss the BBL but is hopeful of returning during the second half of the Sheffield Shield season."

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