Squad Breakdown: Renegades analysis, predicted XI

We've analysed every player in the Renegades predicted starting XI for the upcoming Big Bash SuperCoach season.

Pre-season

The Melbourne Renegades failed to defend their title last season with a disappointing exit without reaching the finals.

Largely disappointing over the years, the Renegades have the sole title to their name and have qualified for just three finals series.

They’ve put in a place a relatively new-look roster, with recruits such as Noor Ahmad, Josh Lalor, James Pattinson, Rilee Rossouw, Imran Tahir and Imad Wasim.

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Tahir will replace Ahmad after Christmas, Rossouw will be available for the entire tournament, while Nabi’s role is less certain in the New Year with Afghanistan recently announcing a tour against Ireland.

Nabi will also miss the opening two games as he completes hotel quarantine.

James Pattinson, Will Sutherland and Marcus Harris are all in the Australia A squad and are set to miss the opening two games for the Renegades, while Test duties will likely limit Pattinson’s availability even further.

Here’s how we see the side lining up for the season opener.

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PREDICTED XI (In batting order)

Aaron Finch (BAT) // $184,800 // BBL 09 SC Ave: 64.6

Finch enters the new BBL season in cracking form following the Australia v India T20 and ODI series.

He notched a ton, two half centuries and a 35 across four knocks against the tourists.

In nine games last tournament he scored 363 runs at 45.37 and a strike-rate of 139.08.

He averaged 64.6 SuperCoach points last season and three years back he averaged a ridiculous 86.9 points!

Currently in just 12.8% of all teams, the Australian captain may just be the man we’re all overlooking simply because he doesn’t have the double game week until Round 6.

Shaun Marsh – (BAT) // $155,300 // BBL 09 SC Ave: 54.3

Marsh is another serious POD at just 9.2% ownership.

In just 12 games last season he scored the fifth most runs of any player with 449 at an average of 37.41 and a strike-rate of 124.03.

His Sheffield Shield form has been sublime, notching scores of 135, 115, 88, 6, 31 and 110* since the resumption of the most recent season.

He’s been a SuperCoach star for many years and can continue on his ways this season.

Like Finch, the risk is in the fact that you’re paying a premium price for a batter (often reserved for all-rounders), but for the same reason you’re getting a genuine gun at low ownership.

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Rilee Rossouw (BAT) // $160,000 // BBL 09 SC Ave: N/A

The South African veteran arrives with 36 ODI and 15 T20 caps for his nation.

In just two recent knocks for Multan in the Pakistan Super League he has returns of just 18 and 5.

However, prior to Covid hitting he notched a 44-ball unbeaten century for the same team in a show of his capabilities.

At just 31-years-old he’s far from over the hill and is a proven international performer.

In 201 career T20s he has an average of 29.50 at a strike-rate of 29.50.

While the upside is obvious, the risk is in the fact he’s solely a batsman, is priced at a premium rate and may bat as low as four which may limit his chances if the two stars above him get moving.

He certainly warrants consideration, but I’d prefer start with one of Marsh or Finch and observe him in the opening round.

He’s owned by an absurd 1.5% of SuperCoaches!

Sam Harper (WKP-BAT) // $119,300 // BBL 09 SC Ave: 41.7

Harper impressed last season in 12 games, scoring 279 at 25.43 with a huge strike-rate of 144.55.

He’ll also take the gloves which should provide a few additional stats in the field.

He’s only played one game of first-class cricket since pre-Covid, scoring 2* for Victoria.

While he has the strike-rate upside and should bat at four, I’m hesitant to invest at an awkward price.

I’m concerned that two of the three players above him score well and limit his opportunity with the bat, although you could argue that any number four faces this prospect.

I’d prefer to pay the extra $35k for someone like Marsh, or opt for a cheapie to free up cash elsewhere.

However, if he can jag the number three spot he’ll warrant far more consideration.

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Beau Webster (BAT) // $143,500 // BBL 09 SC Ave: 50.1

Webster is somewhat similar to Harper in that batting position is of concern, and he’s at an even more awkward price.

He does come in with greater credentials of late though, scoring a seriously impressive 425 runs last campaign at an average of 42.5 and a strike-rate of 131.98.

He doesn’t have a T20 wicket to his name, but he’s been doing stacks of bowling in the Shield for Tasmania this season.

If he was to jag a few overs he’d come into serious consideration, but the Renegades are loaded with bowlers so it’s hard to see him getting an opportunity.

With Nabi out for the first two games it may present him with a few overs.

He has just one half-century in six innings since the Shield resumed.

I’ll be watching very closely in Round 1, if he bats higher up the order or rolls the arm over I’ll reconsider.

Jack Prestwidge (BAT-BWL) // $93,900 // BBL 09 SC Ave: 41

I won’t dwell on Prestwidge too much as I think he’ll play the first two games before being replaced by Nabi once he’s completed hotel quarantine.

If he was playing more regularly he’d be a cheapie option, but I think there’s too much uncertainty over his position to consider buying.

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Benny Howell (BAT-BWL) // $138,000 // BBL 09 SC Ave: N/A

The 32-year-old all-rounder is considered one of the short-form’s most innovative bowlers.

In his most recent cricket for Gloucestershire, he was batting anywhere from 6-8 in the order and regularly bowled his four overs.

In 121 T20 games he has 132 wickets at a very impressive economy of 6.95.

With the willow, he has a very respectable career average of 22.92, which is high quality for a lower order bat.

Cameron Boyce (BWL) // $121,400 // BBL 09 SC Ave: 42.4

Boyce had a decent campaign last tournament, taking 14 wickets in 14 matches at an economy of 7.45.

He hasn’t played first-class cricket since the beginning of the year.

I find it hard to make a case for him until the Round 6 double.

Josh Lalor (BWL) // $134,300 // BBL 09 SC Ave: 46.9

The veteran quick comes in having not played first-class cricket since last year’s Big Bash, but his form in recent times has been decent.

His SuperCoach credentials are evident from his 2018/19 campaign where he averaged a mammoth 70.2 points.

In that season he had three tons, including a score of 183.

Again solid last tournament, he took 11 wickets in 11 games at an economy of 7.92.

He’s a big chance at getting the all-important death overs for the Renegades.

It may be hard to select him before the double game week, but at 1.3% ownership he looms as a super POD.

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Kane Richardson (BWL) // $160,300 // BBL 09 SC Ave: 56.00

Richardson is another elite SuperCoach player with serious consistency over the years.

In the past three seasons he’s averaged 56, 74.5 and 67 (two games).

In 2018/19 he played 14 games, and had a mind-blowing six centuries, a 95 and a top score of 174.

In just eight games last season he had top scores of 134 and 145, huge!

He’s another sleeper for no particularly good reason.

While obviously a huge option for the double game week, he wouldn’t look out of place in any teams from Round 1.

Noor Ahmad (BWL) // $62,500 // BBL 09 SC Ave: N/A

The 15-year-old leg-spinner is sure to attract enormous media attention this season.

He’ll play the first half of the tournament before the arrival of Imran Tahir.

As eluded to by Thommo Aitken on the SC Playbook podcast, it seems a tough move to bring a player of his age over and into hotel quarantine for two weeks and not give him a run, despite the obvious experience benefits he’ll receive.

In 15 T20s he has taken 19 wickets at an economy of 7.11.

Impressive stats, albeit in far inferior competition to what he’ll face in the Big Bash.

I’m hesitant to invest as I think he’ll have to be an absolute superstar of the future to handle the pressure of the Big Bash at this age.

Particularly as a leggie, where if he’s found out early and loses his rhythm it could catapult into something ugly.

SuperCoach aside, I’d love nothing more than to see his success in the tournament.

It’s his price tag of just $62.5k that’s so appealing.

I’m on the fence, and the final credentials of the game’s other cheapies will ultimately make my decision, although I’d like to leave him out.

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OTHERS

Mohammad Nabi (BAT-BWL) // $191,500 // BBL 09 SC Ave: 74.3

Nabi is expected to be available from Round 3 once he’s completed his hotel quarantine.

He may have only played six games last season, but the Afghani all-rounder had an enormous impact with bat and ball.

He scored 160 runs at an average of 53.33 and a strike-rate of 160.00, madness!!!

He’s a coach’s gift, with versatility to bat anywhere in the order and ability to bowl anywhere in the innings, including at the death.

While I expect he’ll regularly bat at six, he’s a pinch-hitter who will likely be promoted up the order at stages.

As such, he often gets a chance with the willow. If the top order score well he comes in late for some big hitting, if they falter up top he comes in early in the innings, perfect.

He’ll be a must-have for the Round 6 double, and is a serious option once he takes the field.

However, I’ll likely be hoping for a few low scores once he’s available to hopefully pick up at a reduced rate for the double.

Will Sutherland (BAT/BWL) // $79,900 // BBL 09 SC Ave: 27.9

Once finished with Australia A I really like the prospects of Sutherland.

He’s in the cheapie price range and should feature prominently with bat and ball.

An all-rounder at a bargain price is hard to ignore, it’s just a matter of whether to pick him from Round 1 or wait until he’s available?

I’m leaning towards waiting until the likely opening game in Round 3.

While opportunities were limited last season, he finished the year with a 153 point haul when taking four wickets.

Marcus Harris – $62,500 – Likely available from Round 3.

Mackenzie Harvey – $62,500

Jake Fraser-McGurk – $42,000

Imran Tahir – $175,000 – Available after Christmas.

Mitch Perry – $42,000

James Pattinson – $162,700 – Availability unknown due to Australian duties, likely not until late in the tournament.

Jon Holland – $42,000

Zak Evans – $42,000

Imad Wasim – $160,000 – Available after Christmas.

Peter Hatzoglou – $42,000

Brody Crouch – $42,000

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