Must-win scenario will make Sixers lift: Botha
Three consecutive defeats have last year's runners-up staring at an early season elimination, but it could inspire them to their best
Sam Ferris at the SCG
29 December 2017, 08:38 AM AEST
After three losses for the Sydney Sixers stand-in captain Johan Botha concedes almost every match for the rest of BBL|07 is a must-win, but that could be a good thing.
The Sixers went down by six runs to the Adelaide Strikers on Thursday night to make it three losses from as many starts this summer.
The latest defeat came off the back of a last-ball loss to cross-town rivals the Sydney Thunder in the season opener and a six-wicket thrashing at the hands of reigning champions the Perth Scorchers before Christmas.
It doesn't get any easier for the Sixers either, as they head to Perth for a New Year's Day showdown with the Scorchers before flying to Geelong to take on the Melbourne Renegades. Those two teams sit atop the points table undefeated ahead of their blockbuster clash at Etihad Stadium on Friday evening.
But Botha, who was filling in as skipper for an ill Moises Henriques, says the win-at-all-costs mentality might have a positive impact on the men in magenta.
"You've got to be desperate, you've to pull out all stops to win," Botha told reporters at the SCG after play.
"We know Perth is a good team, especially at home.
"They are even better there with the character they've got and the belief they can defend anything.
"It's going to be a tough match. In saying that, the three years I was with the Strikers we beat them two or three times, so it can be done.
"The Renegades, for me, is probably the best team in the competition.
"At 0-3 it doesn't look that easy but one (win) from two (upcoming matches) and a win in Hobart (on January 8) and we're sort of still alive with a lot of cricket to come here."
In the past, when each team played eight matches, four wins was the minimum to finish in the top four to earn a semi-final berth.
But with the competition expanding to 10 matches per side this summer, that number of required victories to be safe is more likely six.
For the third-straight match Sydney's top order failed to fire, with Jordan Silk's 32-ball 50 the sole half-century for the Sixers this season.
Strikers opener Alex Carey showed how to score runs at the top of the order with a blazing unbeaten 83 to set up Adelaide's match-winning total of 3-167.
"The top order, the top five need to use most of the balls and then you get your middle to lower order to finish the innings off," Botha said.
"At the moment the middle and lower order have to bat most of the overs and go at 11-12 (runs) an over. It's not ideal.
"Now it's just become a whole lot more difficult and we've got to win six out of seven (matches) to give ourselves a chance."