The stakes are huge, as the eighth edition of the WBBL concludes on Saturday at the North Sydney Oval.
The Sydney Sixers seek to reclaim their WBBL powerhouse status, while the Adelaide Strikers strive for redemption after a heartbreaking loss to the Perth Scorchers last year.
The Sixers dominated the early years of the competition, finishing in the first four finals, including back-to-back titles in the second and third editions. But they haven’t been able to win since their victory over the Scorchers in February 2018 and have had a wooden spoon shock last season.
After a notable comeback, the Sixers will start as favorites against the Strikers after a dominant regular season where they finished on top with 11 wins and automatically qualified for the finals.
There is a side in front of them looking for their first championship. They’ll be out to rest the ghosts of their loss to the Scorchers almost exactly 12 months ago with nine players likely to take the field on Saturday from that game.
With arguably the best attack in the tournament, the Strikers should feel confident as they narrowly beat the Sixers this season in the last clash between the teams a month ago.
A crowd close to capacity is expected at the North Sydney Oval with a strong finish for a tournament.
(Last five completed matches; newest comes first)
sydney sixes WWWWW
Adelaide Striker WWWLL
in the spotlight
After becoming the crowned player of the WBBL, Ashleigh Gardner He is spoken of as the undisputed best player in the country. His spectacular season included 339 runs with 153.39 batting and 23 wickets in 15.08, and his non-spin improved significantly. He emerged as a world-class all-rounder and signed an additional three years with the Sixers. There’s been a lot of talk about the 25-year-old actor and all eyes will be on Gardner on the big stage.
sydney sixes (possible): 1 Suzie Bates, 2 Alyssa Healy (weeks), 3 Ellyse Perry (captain), 4 Ashleigh Gardner, 5 Erin Burns, 6 Nicole Bolton, 7 Sophie Ecclestone, 8 Kate Peterson, 9 Angelina Genford, 10 Lauren Cheatle, 11 Stella Campbell
Adelaide Striker (possible): 1 Katie Mack, 2 Laura Wolvaardt (week), 3 Tahlia McGrath (captain), 4 Deandra Dottin, 5 Bridget Patterson, 6 Madeline Penna, 7 Tegan McPharlin (week), 8 Amanda-Jade Wellington, 9 Jemma Barsby , 10 Megan Schutt, 11 Darcie Brown
Site and conditions
Sunny conditions with a maximum of 23 degrees are expected in Sydney to complete the picturesque North Sydney Oval. The pitch is generally favorable for batting, and the short confines of the ground and fast outfield should guarantee a high-scoring match.
Statistics and trivia
«Given the intensity of the competition and how many games we’ve played in such a short time, I think it’s a real advantage this week. I think everybody has a chance to say work on something or get what they need. It was also a really great chance to spend some more time together. «
Elyse Perry no worries before it’s over after the break
«Losing a final is never easy. Last year we were pretty disappointed and we used that hunger to last all season. We’re going there fearlessly to play our best cricket and we really want that trophy.»
Tahlia McGrath on channeling last season’s near miss
Tristan Lavalette is a journalist based in Perth.
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