Preview: World Cup hero to light up BBL|11 for Scorchers
Mitch Marsh's heroics at the T20 World Cup didn't surprise his Perth teammates – could the 'most in-form batter in the world' help the Scorchers go one better this year and lift the trophy?
Jack Paynter and Riley Alexander
2 December 2021, 02:10 PM AEST
BBL|10 result: Runners up
Squad: Ashton Agar, Cameron Bancroft, Jason Behrendorff, Cooper Connolly, Laurie Evans (England), Aaron Hardie, Peter Hatzoglou, Nick Hobson, Josh Inglis, Matthew Kelly, Mitch Marsh, David Moody, Tymal Mills (England), Lance Morris, Colin Munro (New Zealand), Kurtis Patterson, Jhye Richardson, Aston Turner (c), Andrew Tye, David Moody (replacement for Jhye Richardson)
Ins: Laurie Evans, Peter Hatzoglou (Melbourne Renegades), Lance Morris (Melbourne Stars), Tymal Mills
Outs: Fawad Ahmad (Adelaide Strikers), Cameron Gannon, Cameron Green, Liam Livingstone, Joel Paris (Hobart Hurricanes), Jason Roy, Liam Guthrie, Corey Rocchiccioli, Sam Whiteman
Possible Best XI: Cameron Bancroft, Josh Inglis (wk), Mitch Marsh, Colin Munro, Laurie Evans, Ashton Turner, Ashton Agar, Jhye Richardson, Andrew Tye, Jason Behrendorff, Peter Haztoglou
Possible Best XI for first game: Cameron Bancroft (wk), Colin Munro, Laurie Evans, Ashton Turner, Kurtis Patterson, Aaron Hardie, Matthew Kelly, Lance Morris, Andrew Tye, Jason Behrendorff, Peter Hatzoglou
Is the form of T20 World Cup hero Mitch Marsh enough to help the Scorchers go one better this season? Or could cult figure Peter Hatzoglou be the difference?
After falling to the Sydney Sixers in last year’s final, Adam Voges’ side will be out for redemption in BBL|11 but will have to do it without a host of Australian stars early, as well as the dynamic English duo of Liam Livingstone and Jason Roy who won't be returning this season.
Jhye Richardson has been named in the Test squad, while Mitch Marsh, Josh Inglis and Ashton Agar are all with Australia A, meaning there are plenty of opportunities on the table for some of the Scorchers’ less experienced players.
English international Tymal Mills, who has previously represented the Brisbane Heat and the Hobart Hurricanes, comes into the squad after Brydon Carse's knee injury ruled him out of the tournament.
Predominantly bowlers, Aaron Hardie, Matthew Kelly and Lance Morris will likely all find their way into the first starting XI, with other overseas signings Laurie Evans and Colin Munro, as well as the experienced Cameron Bancroft set to shoulder much of the batting responsibilities.
Inglis and Marsh’s absences early may give Kurtis Patterson some rare game time in the orange kit, while Bancroft will likely have to take the gloves throughout this period after the departure of Sam Whiteman.
Hatzoglou will provide a solid spinning option, while the experienced Andrew Tye and Jason Behrendorff remain in the squad to maintain the strength of the Scorchers’ bowling line up.
When at full strength, this Scorchers team may just be the most damaging in the competition, leaving them well positioned to claim their fourth title.
The inside word with Scorchers captain Ashton Turner
"We think that the depth of our squad is really strong … we've all had a lot of practice living and playing in a really uncertain climate at the moment and this year, for us in particular, is going to be no different. We're not 100 per cent sure what the schedule is going to look like for us but we're expecting to play a lot of games away from home, which is a shame. We love playing at home in front of our friends and family in Perth, but we know that we're going to be challenged in various ways this year. That being said, it hasn't snuck up on us, we feel well planned and well prepared to play wherever we need to and coming off an almost really successful season last year, we've hopefully made the changes as required to go one better."
Player to watch
"We've probably got the most in-form batter in the world in Mitch Marsh coming back. He might miss a game or two, but I think anyone who's seen Mitch bat in the last few months wasn't surprised by his heroics in the World Cup. He's playing as well as I've ever seen him play. We'll try and get him up the order, he will probably bat three for us and try and do a similar job to what he's done in the Australian side. I know he's not much fun to bowl to in the nets and I'm looking forward to watching him bat throughout this tournament."
"Colin (Munro), he's performed amazingly well for us but also around the world he's dominating every tournament that he plays in at the moment, so we know how valuable he's going to be to our batting unit. Laurie Evans, if you look him up on YouTube, he's got some amazing highlights. He's got a great record in this form of the game in particular and we have no doubt that he's going to be an integral part of our squad this tournament."
"We don't mind who we have to beat. The nature of the competition is there's so many good players and every team has players who are able to take games away from you and that is the nature of T20 cricket - anyone can win on any given day. Fourteen games, that's quite a long tournament and you hope the best teams will prevail, but we know that there's a lot of fierce competition out there and we can't wait to get amongst it and try and go as deep into this tournament as we can."
Sign up for BKT Big Bash Tipping this season at tipping.cricket.com.au! Go for the major prize or join a league and take on your friends, family and colleagues.