SuperCoach BBL: The Phantom is dropping Short
With the first SuperCoach BBL lockout fast approaching, it's time for the tinkering to stop.
After weeks of changes, The Phantom has decided on his final team for BBL 08.
But there have been some big moves since the intital draft.
Last season's leading run-scorer - and the most expensive player in the game - D'Arcy Short is gone after underwhelming recent form.
He'll be back in ahead of the Hurricane's double-up games in Round 3 but, to start with, the balance of the team is better without him.
Sydney Sixer and Englishman Joe Denly is the replacement and the extra cash has also helped bring in Afghanistan all-rounder Mohammed Nabi, who could potentially open the batting and the bowling for the Regegades.
Here is the final team
The big-hitting Lynn has failed to fire for Australia, posting three scores of 14 or less in four recent T20 internationals. But the 28-year-old, who is set to bat at three for the Heat, was the leading run-scorer in the JLT One Day Cup earlier in the year and boasts a T20 strike rate of 144. Lynn Gets two cracks at it in Round 1 and is SuperCoach BBL must-have.
In what is likely to make him a top SuperCoach scorer in BBL08, Denly - who has four T20 centuries to his name - will open the batting for the Sixers and, after taking 4/19 in a man-of-the-match performances in a recent T20 international against Sri Lanka, will also feature heavily with the ball.
After a big finish to BBL 07, which included the blistering 115 in the final against the Hurricanes, Weatherald wins a starting spot in The Phantom's side for BBL 08. The left-handed opener, who averaged 59 in the final five games, finished as the third-highest run scorer in the tournament. And only D'Arcy Short sent more balls flying over the fence last season.
At that price, it's hard to ignore an old favourite. After a tough year off the field last season, Klinger is back to open the batting for the Scorchers in BBL 08. The 38-year-old, who has scored 43 or more in five of his past nine innings playing T20 cricket in England, was the third-highest run scorer back in BBL 06 and looms as a nice point-of-difference with a double-game round first up.
With his bargain-basement price, the hard-hitting teenager, who blasted 71 off 32 balls in what was the fastest ever half-century by a Queenslander in the recent JLT Cup, replaces star team-mate Brendon McCullum. And Bryant is likely to open the batting with the former New Zealand captain against the Strikers on Wednesday night.
Ben Dunk (Stars, $67,900 WKP)
It's easy to forget Dunk played five T20 internationals for Australia after a breakout season with the Strikers in BBL06. The keeper, who should open the batting for the Melbourne Stars, is a great value bench option, who provides dual-position flexibility.
Jason Sangha (Thunder, $42,500 BAT)
The 19-year-old has been labeled the next big thing in Australian Cricket and he could show us why in the Thunder's middle order this BBL.
(Strikers, $199,600 BAT)
After a campaign which saw Carey record three more dismissals than any other keeper and score 443 runs - ranking him second behind only Short - Weatherald's opening partner is locked in with a double-game round looming in Round 2.
Tim Ludeman (Renegades, $62,500 BAT)
Didn't enjoy a successful first year at the Renegades in BBL 07 but should get first chance with the gloves and, more importantly, open the innings for a depleted Renegades batting line-up.
The Strikers' star import is arguably the best T20 bowler in the world, taking 200 career wickets at an impressive average of 15.65. In BBL 07, Khan took the equal-most wickets and recorded the best economy rate of the tournament. Another must-have.
(Scorchers, $194,000 BAT)
After hearing of Willey's desire to open the batting for the Scorchers, the England all-rounder, who has 28 T20 international wickets in 24 appearances, replaces Ashton Agar in The Phantom's team. In his T20 career, which also includes a stint in the Indian Premier League, the 28-year-old boasts a batting strike rate of 143.
(Renegades, $192,200 BAT)
The Afghani spinner, who has 207 T20 wickets to his name, is another who will feature prominently with both the ball and bat in BBL 08. With a number first-choice batsmen missing, Nabi, who averaged 30 with the bat in seven games in BBL07, is likely push higher up the order this season.
(Scorchers, $125,000 BAT)
After missing BBL07 through injury, Coulter-Nile is severely underpriced, given his potential output. The right-arm quick took nine wickets in his four JLT Series Cup matches earlier this year before taking 3/18 and smacking 27 off 17 - including three sixes - in the second T20 international against Pakistan. Expect similar numbers in BBL 08.
Mujeeb Ur Rahman
The 17-year-old is hoping to follow in the footsteps of fellow Afghanistan spinner Rashid Khan and after taking nine wickets in his first seven T20 internationals at an average of 15, he's well on his way. And Ur Rahman, who Mark Waugh has predicted to be the "find of the year" in BBL08, has the important double-game round first-up.
Moises Henriques (Sixers, $88,000 BAT)
Any player who will feature early in the both innings has to be considered in SuperCoach BBL and the all-rounder, who has played four Tests for Ausralia, is a prime example. Especially when you're available for less than $90k.
Jack Edwards (Sixers, $42,500 BAT)
His long-blonde hair is hard to forget, as is what the 18-year-old can do with the bat. A maiden first-class century against the Redbacks, in just his fifth inning, reaffirmed the belief that Edwards has a bright future ahead. Should get a chance in the top-order at the Sixers.