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  • Writer's pictureJonathan Turner

2023/24 GameDay Squad AUS Cricket Team Preview: Brisbane Heat

2023/24 GameDay Squad AUS Cricket Team Preview: The Heat had a great season in BBL12 and ended up losing the final to the Scorchers in Perth. Over the history of the BBL, the Heat have one championship and have had four visits to the finals. They have played 137 games, won 59, lost 76 and had 2 no result.

This season they go into the BBL13 with only three new faces, and they are Paul Walter, Jack Wildurmuth and Will Prestwidge. We have seen the number of matches in the round robin decrease from fourteen to ten for each team this season. For the Heat to reach the finals, I believe the magic number of wins will be five. They can achieve this in my opinion as they have the squad to do so, and they tend to play very well at home. Last season they won four of their five games at the Gabba and this season they have five matches at this ground.

The Heat open their season against the Stars on Thursday the 7th of December. This will be quickly followed by a matches against the Strikers at the Gabba on the 9th of December and the Thunder in Canberra on the 12th of December. It looks like they may have Usman Khawaja and Marnus Labuschagne available for their opening games and we might see the Heat get off to a very fast start in their BBL13 campaign.


AUS Cricket Team Preview

Squad (Averages and position rank for BBL13 included)


Sam Billings – Batter, Avg 33.8, Rank 15

Josh Brown – Batter, Avg 26.7, Rank 18

Max Bryant – Batter, Avg 24.7, Rank 21

Usman Khawaja – Batter, Avg 41.1, Rank 7

Colin Munro – Batter, Avg 48.0, Rank 5

Matt Renshaw – All-Rounder, Avg 34.8, Rank 15

Marnus Labuschagne – All-Rounder, Avg 30.5, Rank 18

Nathan McSweeney – All-Rounder, Avg 46.8, Rank 4

Michael Neser – All-Rounder, Avg 53.3, Rank 2

Paul Walter – All-Rounder (Did not play in BBL13)

Jack Wildurmuth – All-Rounder (Did not play in BBL13)

Jimmy Peirson – Wicketkeeper, Avg 28.0, Rank 7

Xavier Bartlett – Bowler, Avg 30.2, Rank 25

Spencer Johnson – Bowler, Avg 32.1, Rank 21

Will Prestwidge – Bowler (Did not play in BBL13)

Matthew Kuhnemann – Bowler, Avg 26.3, Rank 30

Mitchell Swepson – Bowler, Avg 13.9, Rank 34


BBL12 stats from matches played at the Gabba


· Five games played; Heat won four of them.

· Team winning the toss won three matches.

· Team batting first won four matches.

· Average first innings score of 179 (lowest 155 / highest 224)

· Batter GDS average 34.7 points per match

· All-rounder GDS average 36.7 points per match

· Bowler GDS average 31.2 points per match

· Wicketkeeper GDS average 45.4 points per match

· 58 wickets taken by bowlers, 48 to seam and 10 to spin


Player To Watch – Colin Munro (Batter)


Munro is vastly experienced in this format of the game and has played over 400 T20s. The former New Zealand international is now a T20 specialist. Since late 2020 this is the only format of cricket he has played. In T20s he’s scored 5 hundreds, 60 50s, averages 30.60 and has a strike rate of 141.97. Last season he played 8 matches for the Heat scoring one fifty and four scores of 30+ runs. In BBL12, Munro ranked as the fifth best batter based on GDS average.


Most Valuable Player – Usman Khawaja (Batter)


While he's confirmed to be playing (at least in the first game), it's imperative to take advantage of his availability! Uzzy has proven to be extremely damaging when playing through Australian duties, averaging 33.89 runs an innings through 67 matches! BBL 12 was another good tournament from Brisbane's captain who averaged 41.1 GDS points per game through 8 games, ranking 7th amongst batter's league wide. If he can get more involved in the field, Khawaja could just be Brisbane's best come the business end of the tournament.


Biggest Bust Candidate - Mitchell Swepson (Bowler)


Swepson has plenty of experience and has played 68 matches in the BBL. However, his leg spin bowling just doesn’t convert in to decent fantasy production. He bowled at least three overs in 12 of his 14 matches and this came to a total of 44 overs throughout BBL12. Swepson just doesn’t seem to be a wicket taker in this format of the game and only took five wickets last season. He also averages under 1.9 dot balls an over. With only four scores of 10+ points through GDS scoring in BBL12, Swepson is a player that will likely not be starting in my squad unless I have no other option.


Predicted Starting XI

1. Colin Munro

2. Usman Khawaja

3. Marnus Labuschagne

4. Sam Billings

5. Jimmy Peirson

6. Max Bryant

7. Michael Neser

8. Xavier Bartlett

9. Spencer Johnson

10. Mitchell Swepson

11. Matthew Kuhnemann


 

 AUS Cricket Team Preview

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