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Preview: Strikers v Thunder

21 December 2017

Alex Carey celebrates with teammates in his BBL debut against the Thunder last season

The Strikers begin their BBL|07 campaign against the Thunder on Friday night

Strikers v Thunder
Friday 22 December

Adelaide Oval – 7.10pm

Head to head
Adelaide Strikers: 3

Sydney Thunder: 3
No result: 1

Be there! Tickets are still available

Last time
The Adelaide Strikers finished their BBL|06 campaign on a high with a convincing 77-run victory over the Thunder at Adelaide Oval.

Wicketkeeper/gloveman Alex Carey took two catches behind the stumps in his Big Bash debut, while spinner Ish Sodhi claimed six wickets for just 11 runs – the second-best figures in BBL history.

Ben Dunk was the Strikers’ top-scorer with 65 runs from 40 balls, including three sixes.

Talking point
Can the new-look Strikers begin with a win?

Adelaide heads into the summer boasting one of the most dynamic squads in the competition, but will they co-exist from the beginning of the Bash?

New captain Travis Head leads a young batting brigade featuring fellow power-hitters Jake Weatherald, Alex Carey and Jake Lehmann. Emerging paceman Billy Stanlake and exciting Afghan spinner Rashid Khan are also stars of the future.

New Striker Peter Siddle and import Colin Ingram add experience and leadership to the line-up which, on paper, has all the weapons to do some serious damage this summer.

The Thunder have already notched their first win of the season with a final-ball victory over the Sydney Sixers on Tuesday. Does that give the visitors any edge heading into Friday night’s blockbuster?

What to know before you go: Strikers v Thunder

Striker to watch – Rashid Khan
It’s the name on everyone’s lips in Adelaide.

Teenage spin sensation Rashid Khan became the first Afghan to sign with a BBL side earlier in the year and has already proven to be one of the most devastating leg-spinners in T20 cricket.

Armed with an incredible wrong’un, Rashid became the first bowler to claim a hat-trick in the Caribbean Premier League and snapped middle stump during a spell for Comilla Victorians in the Bangladesh Premier League.

The 19-year-old has an unusual bowling action, is ultra competitive, and is sure to become a fan favourite this summer.

Danger man – Shane Watson
The Thunder captain led from the front in his side’s thrilling win in the Sydney Smash on Tuesday night.

Watson turned back the clock with an impressive 77 off just 46 balls to be named Player of the Match in the nail-biting last-ball victory at Spotless Stadium.

It followed a record-breaking performance in Sydney Premier Cricket earlier in the month where he cracked an incredible 16 sixes in an unbeaten 114 from just 53 balls for Sutherland.

The 36-year-old will need to be contained if the Strikers are to get off to a winning start on Friday night.

Strikers squad
Travis Head (c)

Wes Agar
Alex Carey (wk)
Jono Dean
Colin Ingram
Rashid Khan
Ben Laughlin
Jake Lehmann
Peter Siddle
Billy Stanlake
Jake Weatherald
Jonathan Wells
Nick Winter

Thunder squad
Shane Watson (c)
Fawad Ahmed
Jos Buttler
Andrew Fekete
Callum Ferguson
Aiden Blizzard
Ryan Gibson
Chris Green
Mitch McClenaghan
Arjun Nair
Kurtis Patterson
Ben Rohrer
Gurinder Sandhu