BBL Fantasy: Predicting Teams’ Starting XII’s

With under a week until the start of BBL|05, the final list changes have seemingly been made and practice games are starting to give us an idea of how teams are going to line up in round one.

In this article I will try and come up with a starting 12 for each team and explain why some players have been left out or why they’re positioned where they are.

Obviously, this is just a best guess and Big Bash clubs are very guarded about injuries making it hard to predict, but let’s give it a shot anyway!

The Perth Scorchers

  1. David Willey
  2. Michael Klinger
  3. Shaun Marsh
  4. Michael Carberry
  5. Adam Voges
  6. Ashton Agar
  7. Sam Whiteman (wk)
  8. Nathan Coulter-Nile
  9. Andrew Tye
  10. Jason Behrendorff
  11. Brad Hogg
  12. Ashton Turner

The Scorchers have the bye in round one which makes their predictions especially hard. Jason Behrendorff will have to pass a fitness test to play, but he will slot straight into their side if he does. Shaun Marsh and Adam Voges have been given the all-clear to play in their opening match in round two against the Adelaide Strikers which gives them an incredibly powerful batting line up. Mitchell Marsh will not play, however. Once they return to test match duties, expect the likes of Ashton Agar, Ashton Turner, Cameron Bancroft or Marcus Harris to replace them. The Scorchers will be hoping they get access to their test stars throughout the tournament, otherwise their batting is a little shallow. David Willey opened the batting for the Scorchers in their warm-up game giving an indication that they’ll be using him there.

Sydney Thunder

  1. Jacques Kallis
  2. Shane Watson
  3. Usman Khawaja
  4. Michael Hussey
  5. Aiden Blizzard
  6. Andre Russell
  7. Ben Rohrer
  8. Chris Hartley (wk)
  9. Gurinder Sandhu
  10. Clint McKay
  11. Fawad Ahmed
  12. Ahillen Beadle

The Sydney Thunder have been bolstered by the news that Usman Khawaja will be available for the first two rounds of the season giving them a lot of batting depth. Michael Hussey batted in the middle order towards the end of BBL|04 and probably will stay there with Watson and Kallis at the top of the order. With so many all-rounders, they could probably get away with having the three bowlers. The Thunder have been the worst performing team of the BBL so far and will be looking to turn that around this season.

Sydney Sixers

  1. Brad Haddin (wk)
  2. Michael Lumb
  3. Nic Maddinson
  4. Jordan Silk
  5. Johan Botha
  6. Ryan Carters
  7. Sean Abbott
  8. Stephen O’Keefe
  9. Nathan Lyon
  10. Jackson Bird
  11. Doug Bollinger
  12. Ed Cowan

The Sixers have a lot of test match players in their squad and while Josh Hazlewood will not line up for the Sixers, Nathan Lyon will be available for their first two games. Steve Smith will NOT play for the Sixers and Mitchell Starc is obviously injured. The Sixers have excellent depth that should serve them well this summer, despite the test heavy squad. Sixers captain Moises Henriques WILL miss game one due to suspension, but expect him to slot straight back in come round two despite injury concerns. Expect them to rely heavily on their bowling all-rounders in Henriques’ absence rather than going with the extra batsman.

Adelaide Strikers

  1. Craig Simmons
  2. Tim Ludeman (wk)
  3. Brad Hodge
  4. Mahela Jayawardene
  5. Travis Head
  6. Jono Dean
  7. Michael Neser
  8. Kane Richardson
  9. Ben Laughlin
  10. Gary Putland
  11. Adil Rashid
  12. Jon Holland

The Strikers lost Pollard to injury a few weeks ago, but have done spectacularly well replacing him with former Sri Lankan captain Mahela Jayawardene. Who plays out of Putland and Holland could change every week and the Strikers probably have the toughest batting order to predict. The Strikers’ middle order is also rather difficult to predict as they have a lot of options for that number six position. They could play Dean, Ross, Smith or Keath in that position.

Melbourne Stars

  1. Luke Wright
  2. Rob Quiney
  3. Kevin Pietersen
  4. Glenn Maxwell
  5. Peter Handscomb (wk)
  6. David Hussey
  7. Marcus Stoinis
  8. James Faulkner
  9. John Hastings
  10. Adam Zampa
  11. Ben Hilfenhaus
  12. Evan Gulbis

The Stars once again have a very good looking team on paper and just need to convert it into early season wins. Stoinis could bat anywhere from one through to seven and whether they use Handscomb or Triffit as a wicketkeeper is still up in the air. They could also opt to play Michael Beer as their spinner instead of Adam Zampa. Clearly, they have a lot of depth and not a lot of players that’ll miss games due to other commitments. The Stars are looking the goods this year.

Brisbane Heat

  1. Lendl Simmons
  2. Joe Burns
  3. Chris Lynn
  4. Peter Forrest
  5. Nathan Reardon
  6. James Hopes
  7. Ben Cutting
  8. Jimmy Pierson (wk)
  9. Andrew Feketee
  10. Samuel Badree
  11. Mark Steketee
  12. Alex Doolan

The Heat are the team that I’m most worried about when it comes to batting depth. They are heavily reliant on Joe Burns being cleared to play the first few games with Alex Doolan really the only experienced replacement at the top of the order. Burns has been cleared to play the first two games, but beyond that they’re very light on batsman wise. Their bowling stocks are also lacking a little bit of class with Badree really being the only bowler who you can bank on to control the run rate. James Hopes is going to be the key to both their batting and bowling once again this season and they’re going to need Chris Lynn to tear the competition apart.


Melbourne Renegades

  1. Chris Gayle
  2. Aaron Finch
  3. Callum Ferguson
  4. Cameron White
  5. Matthew Wade (wk)
  6. Dwayne Bravo
  7. Tom Cooper
  8. Chris Tremain
  9. Nathan Rimmington
  10. Nathan Hauritz
  11. Xavier Doherty
  12. Peter Nevill

Take a look at that batting order because it is by far the strongest batting line up in BBL|05. Gayle and Finch speak for themselves, Ferguson is in great form, Cam White and Matthew Wade are international calibre and Dwayne Bravo is Dwayne Bravo. However, without Peter Siddle and James Pattinson, their bowling stocks are rather thin and they’re going to be heavily reliant on Tremain and Rimmington this season. Matthew Short and Nick Winter are their other bowling options. Peter Nevill is available the Renegades in round one and it will be interesting to see if they go with the two keepers in the one team. It may come down to whether they want to use Cooper ahead of him. Cooper can bowl a few overs if need be and that might give him the edge considering they’ll be batting at seven.

Hobart Hurricanes

  1. Tim Paine
  2. Ben Dunk
  3. Kumar Sangakkara
  4. George Bailey
  5. Jonathan Wells
  6. Dan Christian
  7. Darren Sammy
  8. Cameron Boyce
  9. Sam Rainbird
  10. Jake Reed
  11. Shaun Tait
  12. Michael Hill

The Hurricanes have a very well balanced team with a strong batting line up and a reliable group of bowlers with Shaun Tait as the x-factor. Jake Reed performed well last season for the Hurricanes, but he and Rainbird could be interchanged with Joe Mennie or Clive Rose depending on the circumstances. They’ve lost Ben Hilfenhaus and Xavier Doherty to other teams and haven’t really replaced them, but if their bowlers get the job done, their batting line up is good enough to make finals.

Those are my predicted first teams for BBL|05. Remember that the Perth Scorchers have a bye in round one and the Sydney Thunder, Sydney Sixers and Melbourne Stars play twice… It’s a weird fixture.

Here is my predicted final ladder for BBL|05 in what should be a very even season.

  1. Melbourne Stars
  2. Melbourne Renegades
  3. Sydney Sixers
  4. Hobart Hurricanes
  5. Sydney Thunder
  6. Perth Scorchers
  7. Adelaide Strikers
  8. Brisbane Heat


  • So you arent convinced Jimmy Pierson will open?

    Also is Rainbird in better form over Mennie?

    • Jimmy could definitely open later in the season. I can’t see him opening while Burns is there though.

      Rainbird/Mennie could go either way. I personally rate Rainbird, but they could definitely go with Mennie

      • Exactly what I am thinking. I had him penciled in as opener in my Phantom XI but didn’t cater for the Test players. I have enough coin to go get either one of them so should be good, will see who gets picked. If none get picked, well…

        • I think that too

          I reckon they’ll promote Peirson to opener when Burns gets recalled to the test side, and then Doolan comes in at 5 (with everyone else moving down 1)

  • Ok guys, making a public league – join up!

  • Also, do you rate Joel Paris? He is in crazy form.

    When do they test players return? Round Two isn’t it?

  • Hopes was batting at 10 in the one of the Shield games recently, I can’t see him batting higher than 8, so probably swap him and Pierson around and that’s pretty close to what we’ll look like in the first game. When Burns leaves I think Pierson will open and Doolan or Floros will bat at 6.

    Also, at Adelaide, Head will bat at 3 I think.

  • Abbott or Bird? Thinking Abbott as he can swing the bat and he is much younger

  • Thoughts on Paris, will he play enough games this season??

  • Spare spots my league. Code 450915, feel free to join

  • I’d say, for the Stars, that it’s more likely that Stoinis will open with Hussey at 4 or 5 above Handscomb and Maxwell. As captain, it’s likely that he’ll have a batting role nearly every game and Maxwell isn’t that suited to being at 4.

  • To fill in the last batsmen bench spot: Quiney, Ferguson, White or Cowan (my preferred order)

  • Will Joe Burns even play?

  • I’ve heard people saying that Kane Richardson is injured, is this correct?

  • Who would you recommend are the best sub 30k batsman and bowlers that are likely to play in round 2? I have 50k left in the kitty and I have to field those 2 spots. Both my bowling benches (Behrendorff and ?????) will have to play in round 2 due to my loading of double game players in round 1. Would be greatly appreciative to get your thoughts :)

  • Nice work mate, but just a heads up , Alex Ross will 100% line up for the Strikers first game. in the Matador team of the tournament, and had a few nice performances at SS level. Also, Ch 10 love mic’ing him up!

  • Hi Nic, I have quite similar sides, with some differences.

    Scorchers- Marsh opening with Klinger at 3. Voges swap with Carberry. Bancroft in for Agar to add depth to batting. Confident with bowling attack of Willey, Coulter-Nile, Tye, Behrendorff and Hogg
    Thunder- Rohrer ahead of Russell in batting order.
    Sixers- Cowan in ahead of Carters. Cowan at 4, Silk 5, Botha 6.
    Strikers- Jayawardene swap with Hodge. Think they may play 2 spinners as well, especially at home, with Holland in at the expense of Putland. Neser the 3rd seamer alongside Richardson and Laughlin.
    Stars- Stoinis straight swap for Quiney into that opening spot with Wright. Hussey swap with Handscomb in batting order. 7-11 is Faulkner, Hastings, Zampa, Hilfenhaus, Boland.
    Heat- Reardon swap with Forrest in batting order, as well as Pierson swapping with Hopes. Lalor in for Steketee to add a bit of variation with him being a left armer.
    Renegades- White and Ferguson swap in batting order. Middle order 5-7 is Cooper, Wade, Bravo. Agree with the 2 spinners, as Bravo able to be reliable 3rd seamer.
    Hurricanes- Christian and Wells swap in batting order. Mennie in for Rainbird.

  • I think the heat line up will read more like this

    Also stoinis will open and quiney will not play

  • Who are people selecting as their captain for round 1? I’m thinking of going Shane Watson seeing he is playing twice, should open the batting and get a couple of overs with the ball.

  • League 300771

  • 533721

  • Do u think I should put kallis in my team cause he is really expensive.

  • Do u think I should put kallis in my team

  • any suggestions for good bowlers?

  • How do you find official lineup and when is it announced

  • If anyone wants to join a public league 561207, 7 spots left

  • Anyone wanna join a league? Code: 830508

  • Sean Abbott vs Johan Botha vs Craig Bird, thoughts on who to put in regardless of price?

  • Zampa (Stars) or Botha (Strikers)?

    C.Simmons (Strikers) or Head (Strikers)?

  • 1 spot left in a league if anyone wants in, 525154

  • Botha Kingzy1

  • What happens with the renegades line up now that Ferguson is out?

    • Horrible and unfortunate for Ferguson, but an ACL injury? As a batsman?! One would think he’s playing in the AFL!

  • League code 653614