Who will be the Big Bash Top Batsman for the 2018/19 season? These four are certainly worth a look at good value prices with Unibet.

Big Bash 9 Top Batsman: Who will end up top of the pile?

We’ve already looked at what it takes to be a Big Bash top runscorer but here’s a quick refresher for those who weren’t paying attention at the back.

  • Must be an opening batsman.
  • Australians tend to win this.
  • Not a player who is part of the current Test squad (Travis Head, Aaron Finch, Daniel Harris, Shaun Marsh) who will miss the start of the tournament nor one who will be called up for the ODI Series against India and miss the latter part of the tournament (Chris Lynn, Alex Carey, Glenn Maxwell).
  • A proven track record of getting runs in this competition.
  • A high strike rate helps but isn’t essential.
  • Must provide good betting value. No point ticking all those boxes but then being a horribly short price. The risk won’t justify the reward.

So with all that in mind, here are two from the shorter priced players and two from among the bigger-priced players worthy of consideration.

Big Bash Top Batsman: Two from the favourites

Shane Watson (14/1) with Unibet

The ultimate Marmite player who should have been idolised by the Aussie fans for his contributions in limited-overs cricket but had those who loved and appreciated him and those who felt he perhaps loved himself too much and as a result, never took a fancy to him.

Watson pretty much only plays T20 cricket these days which is understandable at 37 and that allows him to stay fresh and prepared for the tournaments he does play.

Last year’s fifth highest runscorer with 331 runs including two fifties, he’ll open the batting for Sydney Thunder, the side he also captains. There will be lots of leg side flicks, straight sixes and vicious pulls when he bats and he has that knack of cashing in when he’s set. It wasn’t that long ago that he was scoring a match-winning century in the IPL final.

 

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Mathew Wade (16/1) with Unibet

Another former Aussie international. In his case he’s not formally retired from international cricket but he’s unlikely to get another game for his country.

So much better for the Hobart Hurricanes. He’ll captain the side this year after George Bailey decided to step aside and he’ll open the batting. Whereas all eyes will be on opening partner D’Arcy Short when he goes out to bat, Wade can be just as dangerous.

In typical keeper fashion, he’s strong with the cut shot and the pull which he’ll use to good effect in the opening overs but as a veteran of 94 ODIs, he also knows how to rotate the strike during those middle-overs where he’s likely to be facing spin. Good thing he’s a good sweeper of the ball.

 

Big Bash Top Batsman: Two from the outsiders

 Jake Weatherald (22/1) with Unibet

The Betting Maestro is extremely surprised he’s this sort of price because he ticks every last one of the boxes at the top. One of those is that he’s got a good record in the competition.

Only last year he ended third on the list, sandwiched between Adelaide team-mates Travis Head and Alex Carey.

The first will hardly play Big Bash at all, the second will surely report for ODI duty halfway through so Weatherald will have to step up to the plate. That may mean scoring at a slower rate when those are away, but so what? It’s the runs that count here, not how quickly you get them.

He really was brilliant last season, passing 50 once in every four matches in a total that included a breath-taking century. He could go even better this time round.

 

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Ben Dunk (30/1) with Unibet

After a long-term contract secured at the Melbourne Stars, Dunk quite frankly had a shocker last season. 10 innings, almost all as an opener, yielded just 115 runs. Further proof of just how bad a season he had was the fact that one knock brought him 47 runs of those runs. In other words, if you were to take that one out of the equation, his average for the season was very much in single figures.

So how come we’re tipping him up as a potential Big Bash top batsman? Well, the previous season (2016/17) he was the Big Bash top batsman with 364 runs while at the Adelaide Strikers, which shows he can not only get big scores as a one-off but can consistently make big contributions over the course of a season. Those runs included three fifties and he was striking at a mammoth 164.

So we can put that horror show last year down to the fact he’d changed teams and for whatever reason couldn’t come to terms with his new franchise, his role in the side and he conditions at the MCG. It happens.

With Luke Wright gone, Peter Handscombe currently on Australia duty and new recruit Nic Maddinson out injured for a few weeks, the Stars haven’t really got any choice but to give him another go as an opener, the only question being who will open alongside him.

There will be no excuses if he fails again but he’s shown what he can do in the BBL in the past and is certainly worth a bet based on that.

 

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