The red-hot Melbourne Stars will look to continue their winning streak when they host Sydney Thunder on Wednesday at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).
The Stars have ten points from six matches (W5, L1) and have won their last three games. That included a nervy three-wicket win over the Thunder, who have now won just one of their last five matches and have suffered back-to-back losses.
Before their big names leave for national duty, the Stars will be keen to notch up another win. Marcus Stoinis (281 runs, SR 122.70) has been exceptionally consistent, while Glenn Maxwell (169 runs, SR 167.32) continues to impress with his aggressive displays.
Adam Zampa (nine wickets, ER 6.77) will also be sorely missed once he leaves for national duty. However, with all their key bowlers conceding less than seven runs an over, the Stars have been leading from the front with the ball. Dale Steyn (ER 6.23) and Sandeep Lamichhane (ER 6.75) have been proving equally tough to get away.
It is Callum Ferguson (253 runs, SR 141.34) all the way for the Thunder batting. They were really unlucky to come second-best to the Heat in a rain-affected match. Regardless of the loss, the way Ferguson and Usman Khawaja (179 runs, SR 133.58) have been shaping up augurs well for the Thunder.
Daniel Sams (14 wickets, ER 7.97) continues to pick up wickets and should be a good bowling leader for the Thunder once again. Chris Morris (eight wickets) has settled nicely into the side, although his high economy rate (8.77) remains a concern.
The Stars are absolutely flying at the moment, with strong performances consistently. With their top names set to leave soon, there is no doubt that the Stars will look to continue their winning run. The Thunder have been impressive too, although their recent loss wasn’t a true reflection of their prowess.
History & Statistics
- The Stars have won only of the previous seven matches against the Thunder, winning the last two.
- The Stars scored the most sixes of the match in four of their six matches this season.
- The Thunder have a 4-1 H2H record at the MCG, including winning the last three.
- The Thunder have had the highest opening partnership in each of their four away matches this season, all away from home.
Three 50+ scores in six innings – Stoinis has been a picture of consistency for the Stars this season. Expect him to continue in the same rich vein of form.
He will be up against the guile of Sams, who has been a proven wicket-taker this season. His left-arm variety only adds to the intrigue and so does his slower balls.