Hobart Hurricanes preview

IN

Ben Dunk (Sydney Thunder)

Doug Bollinger (Sydney Thunder)

George Bailey (Melbourne Stars)

Aiden Blizzard (Adelaide Strikers)

OUT

Mark Cosgrove (Sydney Thunder)

Rhett Lockyer (Sydney Thunder) – if this was an AFL trade he would be the steak knives that meant you swapped draft pick 57 for draft pick 54

Delisted

Phil Jacques – playing permanently in England.

Luke Feldman

Nick Kruger – unable to commit to Bash due to hosting ‘Big Brother’

Evan Gulbis – still celebrating that he got a contract in BBL|01

Matt Johnson

 

 

THE PLAYERS

Tim Paine – Keeper/captain who is like a new recruit after missing Bash 1 due to complications from Dirk Nannes mashing his finger in a hit and giggle match. Nannes then broke Paine’s finger when they played cricket. TP is loving keyless entry and push button start on his new Prius as he is still unable to hold a set of car keys and he pays for everything by card as he can no longer carry loose change. Has had The Weapon working tirelessly on his finger for the past 2 years….

Ben Laughlin – pacemen & lovely shaper of the ball. According to Brendon Julian his stock balls are the Yorker, the bouncer and the slower ball .Yes, it’s official,  he hates line and length hence his nickname Ben ’No line and length here sonny’ Laughlin. Mind you he does bowl a heavy ball from his low skiddy action that doesn’t let him really bang  it into the pitch. Is currently plying the route pioneered by Damien Wright – domestic T20 in New Zealand  – where he is turning out for some team in the HRV Cup.

Michael Hogan – medium fast rather than fast medium line and length bowler whose length is the perfect hitting length and whose line is down leg side. Has learnt to bowl a domestic standard heavy ball through stints at WA and Glamorgan. Michael ‘Hair Down’ Hogan and Tarvis ‘Party Boy’ Birt will come under heavy scrutiny from team officials as they are known for their rock star lifestyles in Perth as the feted list cloggers of WA cricket.

Rana Naved Ul Hasan – the best four words to come out of Hobart in a long time. One of the all time great mullets and a world class bowler with great control and variations – slower balls, yorkers, slow bouncers, you name them he can do it.  Takes wickets and is a handy  contributor with the bat as well. A great recruiting move by Hobart and he keeps coming back year after year.

George Bailey –  Bailey is  the man that time forgot with a name and appearance that suggest he would have been better suited to being “The Right Honourable George Bailey, Governor of Van Diemen’s Land, 1887 to 1894” ‘The Governor’ decided to abandon his colony for the mainland in the inaugural Bash and produced a mediocre season for the Melbourne Stars which was promptly reward with the captaincy of the Australian T20 team in his first international match – reinforcing the notion that he is ‘The Governor’  The Governor has returned to his native colony this summer and will operate under the leadership of TD Paine. You can’t be Vice- Governor can you?

Doug Bollinger – has been hired

A) to bowl IPL standard left arm heavy balls http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=juV_1d1-yNA

B) to lead the boundary line dancers when a six is hit  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E-8F4EM_edk

C) to have the hair hat stuck on his bongo mocked http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qjMOH6VEPMA

Your choice.

Xavier Doherty – hopefully the Governor will give him the last over of the game against Sydney Thunder when Gayle is batting….. or not. “Subtle variations in pace and flight” are always the phrases bandied about when I hear people talk about XD. To me that reads “Does not spin the ball much, if at all” Australian ODI commitments may preclude him from the pointy end of the Bash.

Travis Birt – Travis ‘Party Boy’ Birt was one of the biggest and most consistent six hitters in Bash 1 so it would be trite to say he can and does hit a long ball. In his spare time he manages the team band, “The Hurricane Howlers” an eclectic mix of Led Zeppelin and Marilyn Manson covers played using traditional Australian bush dance instrument. Birt is on the spoons, Krejza on the bottle caps nailed to a stick thing and Jon Wells, inspired by Ted Egan, is lead vocals and busy perfecting his technique on the Egan patented ‘Foster Phone’ (tapping an empty cardboard slab box for the uninitiated. I know you are thinking, “Surely you jest – that’s not a musical instrument” –  WRONG: )

Owais Shah – one of the best overseas signings from last year. Made a mountain of runs at the top of the order at a good clip and can and does hit a long ball. Known for following a strict organic, vegan, raw foodism diet and is a big fan of activated almonds and alkalised water.

Jason Krejza –  Off spinner. Can bat a bit. Probably best known for being a  member of the “THE SH1T LIST”  the long line of spinners tried since Shane Warne’s retirement.

Jon Wells – a top order batsmen who is bringing out his own range of smart casual wear in a variety of garish, epileptic fit inducing colours that you wouldn’t be seen dead in (makes me think of Rivers.)  His signature outfit is an ensemble inspired by the sailing ships on the Derwent estuary which are not to be missed when watching cricket at Hurricane House.  The nautical theme starts with a pair of white plimsolls to represent the hull of the boat, a pair of the aforementioned garish coloured range of chinos (rolled up at the bottom of course) represent the mast of the yacht and a large white billowy shirt with many, many ruffles represent the sails. Ideal for the middle aged man trying to hide his spinnaker chest. Wells also loves wearing purple, it’s his favourite colour.

Aiden Blizzard – Can hit a very long ball. EVIDENCE: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EHs8fWaz2cU Hasn’t done much else and is on his third state – Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania.

Ricky Ponting – If you are not familiar with this player perhaps you shouldn’t be reading this blog. Cameo appearances due to Test commitments.

Scott Styris – ‘Billy Ray’ Styris is known to be the grumpiest man in international cricket and has been trotting the globe on the T20 gravy train for a while now. Cracked a whirlwind ton in England this year but I can’t see how he will get a game in Hobart. Rana & Shah are locks in my mind and I believe available for the whole season as neither are close to selection for their respective national teams. Maybe Rana is – last I heard he was having a dispute with his board. Billy Ray will FIFO with his NZ team too so availability will be reduced.

Timm Van Gugten – “Dutchy” is in Hobart as part of a player exchange program aimed to strengthen bilateral cricket and trade ties between the Netherlands and Australia.With degrees in economics, international trade and finance under his belt, Van Gugten is splitting his time in Australia between completing a MBA at Hobart Uni, completing an internship at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, bowling a heavy ball for Sandy Bay on Saturdays in Hobart Grade Cricket and Bash-ing it for Hobart over December- January. In his spare time he likes to sleep. Won’t play.

Ed Cowan – laughable selection. Are they giving out contracts for being a good bloke? What the squad really needs is a slow batsmen best suited to games that go for 4 days not 4 hours. The Hurricanes already have Jon Wells for that job! And Luke Butterworth can’t get a contract in a team that’s crying out for a genuine all rounder – Krejza doesn’t count, he can’t bowl.

 

 

THE SUMMARY

One of the teams to keep the majority of their squad together after BBL|01 and  have only signed 16 players so maybe Luke Butterworth will get a contract. The only loss of note is Phil Jacques who had a very good Bash last season opening but is now permanently in England.  The Hurricanes have strong middle order batting with Shah, Birt and The Governor just a query over the opening partner for Paine- probably Dunk or Wells. The bowling, with the addition of Bollinger, looks to have good variety with left and right arm pacemen and spinners. Only glaring issue is no all rounder – can I suggest LUKE BUTTERWORTH.

 

 

THE XI

  1. Tim Paine
  2. Ben Dunk
  3. Owais Shah
  4. Travis Birt
  5. George Bailey
  6. Aiden Blizzard
  7. Jason Krejza
  8. Rana Naved Ul Hasan
  9. Ben Laughlin
  10. Xavier Doherty
  11. Doug Bollinger

 

PREDICTION: 3rd

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Published by

Ross Slater

Blogging about the important things - AFL and cricket

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