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|Quinton de Kock||7||7||0||1||100.00|
The carnival that lasted for over a couple of weeks is finally coming to an end and we have one final game to play before we get the inaugural title holders in the Men's edition of the Hundred. We saw an anti-climatic finish to what otherwise was a hard-fought tournament as Southern Brave defeated Trent Rockets with considerable ease to qualify for the grand finale.
The final of the men's edition of the Hundred is all set to be played between Birmingham Phoenix and Southern Brave. Considering that these two sides finished at the top of the ladder in the league stage, the final draw could not have been more fitting. The final is to be played at the Lord's Cricket Ground, London on Saturday, 21st April 2021.
Birmingham Phoenix were the best side at the end of the league stage and their position on the points table reflected that. They finished at the top of the ladder with 12 points to their name, coming from six wins in eight matches. Also, their net run rate of 1.087 was best amongst all sides, and that speaks volumes about how dominant they were.
The Phoenix looked in complete control in the last league match as well as they defeated Northern Superchargers in a thumping manner. Chasing a total of 144, they never took their foot off the gas pedal as they chased down the total with 26 balls to spare and eight wickets in hand.
In the upcoming match, however, Finn Allen will not be available for Birmingham Phoenix, but his absence will be made up for by the return of Moeen Ali. Moeen Ali played an instrumental role in Phoenix's journey up until now and his presence adds to the balance of the sides. Liam Livingstone has looked in terrific form for Phoenix and is coming off a swashbuckling 92 in the last league match. He will be the player to watch out for from the Phoenix's camp in this upcoming encounter.
All in all, Birmingham Phoenix look a complete side even with a couple of players not being available. The kind of depth they have shown thus far has been commendable. They will be brimming with confidence and if they do not get complacent for this grand encounter, beating them is going to be incredibly difficult.
David Bedingham, Will Smeed, Liam Livingstone, Moeen Ali, Miles Hammond, Christopher Benjamin, Benny Howell, Adam Milne, Dillon Pennington, Patrick Brown, Imran Tahir.
With a fantastic win over Trent Rockets in the eliminator, Southern Brave would be jubilant. They were one of the better sides in the league stage, finishing second with 11 points, and will be relieved after securing a date at the home of Cricket. They were pretty consistent in the league stage and the experience of playing a knockout game could come in handy when they take on Birmingham Phoenix tomorrow.
With some terrific exponents of the white-ball Cricket, Southern Brave have a well-equipped side. Their batting looks aggressive enough with Paul Stirling and Quinton de Kock available at the top. Besides, the kind of form James Vince has been should boost their morale massively. With Chris Jordan available to at eighth position, they have envious depth in their batting.
On the bowling front as well, Southern Brave have not a dearth of limited-overs specialists. Chris Jordan and Tymal Mills have wealth of experience of bowling in death overs and that could come in handy in this upcoming match. Besides, Craig Overton, Jake Lintott, and George Gardon have done incredibly well in the tournament so far and should be brimming with confidence.
All in all, this James Vince-led side not only is in terrific form but also looks immaculately balanced on paper. If they continue to do as they did against the Rockets, Birmingham Phoenix will have their work cut out.
PR Stirling, Quinton de Kock, James Vince, Alex Davies, Tim David, Ross Whiteley, George Garton, Chris Jordan, Craig Overton, Tymal Mills, Jake Lintott.
Both sides will be pumped by the return of the players who left to play for England in their series against India. Plus, both sides are coming off confidence-boosting results in their respective last matches and should be brimming with confidence. Comparing the two sides on paper and otherwise, Birmingham Phoenix appear to be a slightly better-balanced side. Besides, they were more consistent in the league stage and are better equipped to do well in this high-pressure fixture, largely because of the experience they have. Considering that, we will be placing our money on a Birmingham Phoenix win and so should you.
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