POD Hunter: Unique players to find an edge, Rd 9

We take a look at the best low-ownership options to set you apart from SuperCoach BBL rivals.

Champion PODs

The next two rounds look like they’ll provide plenty of opportunities to climb the rankings. There’s a plethora of options from the Stars and Scorchers leading into their double game week.

The Stars were in action early on in round 7, playing a rain-affected 10-over-a-side match vs the Heat. It’s hard to read too much into the scores from this match. However, the resulting low scores will provide opportunities to pickup a few PODs at a discount.

This includes the Stars’ recent addition, Harris Rauf (0.2% owned). Rauf was explosive last BBL season, claiming 20 wickets in 10 innings, with a scalp every 11.4 balls at an E/R a tick over 7. The highlight was a five wicket haul against the Hurricanes.You’d have to think most sides will be better for the run against Rauf last season though.

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Since exploding onto the T20 scene, Rauf’s career stats have levelled out a little bit, striking every 15 balls at an E/R of 8.2. That S/R is still outstanding, but the E/R suggest batsman have been able to get after him a bit.

For many SuperCoaches, it could well be a decision between Rauf and Adam Zampa (15% owned). Zampa has carried his Australian form into the BBL, resulting in an average 61.2 SC points. I’m inclined to wait a week on making a decision on Zampa, so that I can have one more look at Rauf.

Zampa’s spin counterpart Zahir Khan (2.4% owned) has been less effective this season. So much so that his SuperCoach average is in single figures (7.3 points).

This is in stark contrast to the 22-year-old’s career record though. In 58 T20 matches, he has 67 wickets, striking every 18.6 balls and going at a tick over 7 runs overs. This season’s stats are also a very small sample size to judge Khan on, as he’s only bowled the 10 overs.  

I believe Khan’s locked in the third international spot for the Stars. He looks great value provided that he keeps his spot. Khan should also be to be picked up for around $80k or less for the DGW (current BE of 75).

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There’s value options-a-plenty from the Stars at the moment. Sam Rainbird (0.7% owned), Nick Larkin (1.2% owned) and Andre ‘the Spiceman’ Fletcher (5.1% owned) are all potential bargain buys. Rainbird should be around $100k or less, Larkin around $80k and Fletcher sub $70k once lockout opens.

Tim Williams alerted me to Rainbird in the latest SC Playbook podcast. Rainbird is a player who’s had limited opportunities across a BBL career spanning five seasons.

He’s been making the most of his opportunity with the Stars this season though, having claimed the prized scalps of D’Arcy Short and Dawid Malan in his first two matches.

Rainbird offers left-arm pace variety for the Stars and is another who is a good option for your team provided he holds his spot.

Nick Larkin broke out last BBL season scoring 297 runs at an average of 37.1 and a S/R of 136.9. Many would have started with him this season hoping for similar output. However, a move down the order for the Stars limited his opportunities.

He looks to be back up the top of the order, having been named to bat at three in recent matches. Larkin moved back down the order in the rain affected match against the Heat. However, I suspect this was to move the likes of Nicholas Pooran up the order for the shortened match.

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Larkin still managed 35 n.o. off 16 balls thanks to some lusty hitting at the end of the innings. For this reason, his price will be on the way up. Consequently, you may need to make a call on him this week if you want to get him for under $100k.  

It’s been a different story for the Spiceman who hasn’t been able to find form lately. He’s averaging just 12.4 with the bat this season at a S/R 120.8. That batting average is well below his career average of 26.9.

To get an international opening bat at under $70k is excellent value for SuperCoach. He’s also pulled off a few spectacular catches in the outfield, which offers a few handy points.

I’d still prefer Larkin, but the Spiceman will have a highish BE this round, so he can wait. By then he may even be able to get a few runs under his belt.   

Moving onto the Scorchers who are on fire at the moment. Almost every one of their players is an option!

Leading the Scorchers’ charge has been Jhye Richardson (14.3% owned). Following his mammoth 165-point effort this round he has the most points of any player in SuperCoach this season, yet he’s still relatively low ownership.

J Richo will come at a significant cost though (well over $200k). If you want him, this round could be the last chance to get him before he rises even further in price prior to the DGW. 

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Of the other Scorchers’ PODs, I like Jason Behrendorff (4.5% owned), Colin Munro (3.3% owned), Fawad Ahmed (5.2% owned) and Josh Inglis (15% owned).

The time looks right for Behrendorff, who should be priced around $130k max. He returned from a long injury lay-off this season and has been progressively getting back to his best. He claimed the key wickets of Alex Hales and Callum Ferguson against the Thunder.

One downside I can see to Behrendorff, or most Scorchers players for that matter, is that they’ll be moving away from their home venue for the DGW matches. However, I think Behrendorff is a good option regardless and he does still have a match at Optus Stadium this coming round.

Colin Munro looks to have really hit his straps, scoring three half-centuries in a row for the Scorchers. This is carrying on his excellent form from the Caribbean Premier League last year. His price is on the way up but hopefully we’ll still be able to get him at sub $150k post lockout.

Fawad Ahmed scored just the 14 points in the round just gone. This means he can probably wait a week. He’s similarly priced to Behrendorff around $120k.

One thing to consider with Ahmed is that the pitches at Manuka Oval and Marvel Stadium may suit him better than Optus Stadium.

Josh Inglis has moved down the order, but his SC output has been on the rise. It looks as though he’s alternating with Munro between batting at three or four, dependent on matchups.

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Inglis had an excellent three round average of 80.3 points coming into round 8. He generally goes at a S/R of over 140 and averages about 30 with the bat, so is well in SuperCoach gun territory. He’s a great option for the DGW, especially if you need a keeper.

I’m a little less keen on Liam Livingstone (5.3% owned) and Jason Roy (4.7% owned). I don’t think either of those two are bad options. However, with so many others to choose from I’m inclined to pass on Livingstone due to lack of form and Roy because of his price.

I find it hard to consider PODs from other teams at this point due to there being so many options from the Scorchers and Stars. However, one player I feel the need to mention is Aaron Finch (18.9% owned).

Whilst Finch’s ownership levels may not warrant ‘POD status’, he’s going to be available for around $80k this round. That’s insane value for a player who once averaged 87 points in a season (albeit under a more favourable scoring system for batsman).

I think Finch must come under consideration for SuperCoaches who don’t own him. However, it isn’t entirely unprecedented for him to have a down season in SuperCoach. In 2018-19 he averaged just 41.4 points.

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We’re spoilt for choice this round! Colin Munro and Jason Behrendorff are my preferred POD picks. Munro’s price is on the way up so you may need to prioritise him if you want both but can only get one this round.

If you can find a way to get Jhye Richardson in he could also give your team a massive edge.

Nick Larkin is my preferred option from the Stars. He should be at a good price this round and continue to increase in value. Personally, I don’t own Aaron Finch, so it’s a difficult decision between these two.

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The coming two rounds are our last chance to capitalise on a double game week. I think we couldn’t have asked for two more interesting teams for SC purposes.

Good luck for the coming round!

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