Big Bash robbed of Windies talent

FOR the last seven summers, the Big Bash League has had the worldwide domestic T20 tournament to itself for December and January.

And from the first season onwards, the international imports have been drawn by the summer vibe, the massive crowds and the general atmosphere of “the only show in town”.

But what happens when there’s a new town, that won’t make a player stick around as long, and will pay more for less of their time?

For the first time in a long time, BBL|08 has competition to attract players — the first edition of the UAE T20x tournament is scheduled from 19 December 2018 to 11 January 2019, with five sides comprised of 16 players on each list, with finals dates yet to be announced.

The tournament has already announced five all-star icon players, many of who have appeared in BBL tournaments in the past — Kumar Sangakarra (Sri Lanka), Eoin Morgan (England), Shahid Afridi (Pakistan), David Miller (South Africa) and Andre Russell (West Indies).

Four of five of the below West Indian players are still yet to announce whether they will appear in either the BBL or the UAE T20x … or both!

These are the West Indian players we hope to see on our shores this summer:

1 Sunil Narine (TBC)

You don’t become the second-best T20 player of all time by accident. And make no mistake, that’s exactly what you get with Sunil Narine. The mischievous spinner mystified batsmen in the 2016-17 season, taking 15 wickets for the Renegades in just eight games, before departing the league due to personal reasons. Not only is Narine sublime with the ball, he’s fairly handy with the bat, showcasing all-rounder talents that make him the perfect package for your SuperCoach team should he find a home in BBL|08.

Sunil Narine’s unique action has bamboozled many batsmen across the globe. Picture: Nicki ConnollySource:News Corp Australia

2 Evin Lewis (TBC)

One of the most devastating top-order batsmen in the short-form game, Evin Lewis could be considered a walk-up start to your SuperCoach BBL team … if he successfully signs on for a BBL team this summer. With all eight teams still to fill their rosters, international talent is at the forefront, particularly hard-hitting, excitement machines who can comfortably crack consistent big scores. Known famously for scoring 100 off 49 balls in a T20I against India in 2016, Lewis would be a huge addition to the Big Bash League, as well as your SuperCoach team.

3 Andre Russell (TBC)

Andre Russell during his time with the Thunder. Picture: Gregg PorteousSource:News Corp Australia

Despite being confirmed as a T20x representative, there’s still a chance Russell will be part of the BBL|08 tournament as the season gets busy. There’s an argument to be had that Andre Russell is the complete T20 player, and we have to agree. Dubbed ‘Dre-Russ’, the West Indies all-rounder can whack big scores with the bat, clearing fences at will, whilst with ball in hand his electric pace strikes fear into the best of batsmen. He was a shining light for Sydney Thunder in their title-winning 2015/16 season, and whilst Russell has spent a year out of the game due to a drug-related ban, BBL clubs should be scrambling in a bid to secure his services. However, after the West Indies ODI team surprisingly recalled the star all-rounder for the first time in three years, Dre-Russ doesn’t come without potential risk for coaches, as he could miss parts of BBL|08 with national white-ball commitments.

4 Dwayne Bravo (TBC)

Dwayne Bravo is a proven player on the T20 circuit.Source:Getty Images

A BBL favourite, Dwayne Bravo has been a regular member of the Windies since debuting in 2004. Just like his wicket celebrations, Bravo is an excitement machine. He took 18 wickets from 11 games last season at the Renegades, whilst also scoring 100 runs in eight innings. Observant SuperCoach followers would have been buoyed by the maestro’s return in BBL|07 off the back of a six-month hamstring layoff that derailed his BBL|06 campaign, putting a line through concerns the talented all-rounder might be limited upon his return. Nonetheless, Bravo is one to keep an eye on to see whether he is mid-priced ahead of the new season, and looms as a safe bet. Recently announced his retirement from international cricket but will continue playing T20 franchise cricket.

5 Kieron Pollard (TBC)

Kieron Pollard is a T20 gun for hire.Source:AAP

A notable gun-for-hire, Kieron Pollard’s devastating record speaks for itself. The 6-foot-4 man mountain is a six machine, cracking no-less than 21 sixes in BBL|07 — a tantalising prospect for any serious SuperCoach team. Pollard combines the perfect blend of batting firepower with a bowling economy rate of sub-10. The fact that Pollard is considered an all-rounder given his strength with the bat is a SuperCoach gift, and he should be seriously considered in your team.

MORE SUPERCOACH BBL CONTENT

Cheapie Bible / L-plate guide / Batsmen prices revealed / Bowlers prices revealed / Top 100 players in BBL / SuperCoach scoring system revealed / 10 commandments / Best batsmen / Best all rounders / Best bowlers / Best wicket keepers / 10 fearless predictions / BBL’s international onslaught / Poms set to dominate Big Bash / West Indian guns-for-hire / Full squad list

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Originally published as Big Bash robbed of Windies talent

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