Our Prediction is Northern Knights to win!
Super Smash is certainly one of the competitive T20 tournaments in the world. The opening game of Super Smash 2018-19 will see reigning champions Northern Knights take on Wellington Firebirds in Seddon Park, Hamilton on Saturday.
Knights played splendidly well last season to clinch the trophy last season. Anton Devcich, Tim Siefert and Ish Sodhi played leading roles to see Knights win the crown for the second time in the history of the competition. On the other hand, Wellington Firebirds managed to win three games out of ten played last season.
Northern Knights is going to be led by Dean Brownlie this year while Hamish Bennett will lead the Wellington Firebirds for this opening game of the competition.
Defending Champions Northern Knights will be looking to get off to good start in this year's competition. The team will look to continue their good form after winning the competition last season.
In the batting department, the side will be relying on Anton Devcich, who was Knights leading run-scorer last season. He scored 343 runs in 10 games at an average of 42.87. Wicket-keeper batsman Tim Siefert also produced consistent scores for the Knights last season. Captain Dean Brownlie, Daryl Mitchell, and Daniel Flynn produced crucial contributions for Northern Knights in the previous edition of the competition.
In the bowling department, the team is largely dependent on the likes of Brent Arnel, Scott Kuggeleijn, Ish Sodhi. Leg-spinner Ish Sodhi was the premier spinner for the Knights with 12 scalps to his name last season. Surprisingly, Devcich was leading wicket-taker for Knights last year, as he claimed 15 wickets in 10 games at an average of 16.20.
On the other hand, Wellington will be looking to do better this time after finishing fifth in the league table last season. In the batting department, the team will be depending on Luke Ronchi, who is an experienced cricketer in the T20 format. Last season, he scored 181 runs in 6 matches at an average of 30.16 with one century to his name. Tom Blundell is another notable name in the batting department who will be keen to do well this season. Hamish Marshall, Devon Conway and Michael Bracewell also chipped in with crucial scores for Wellington last season.
In the bowling department, the focus will be once again on the likes of Hamish Bennett, Jeetan Patel, and Anurag Verma to provide crucial breakthroughs with the ball. England all-rounder Samit Patel proved to be a valuable addition to the side as an overseas player. He scored runs and also picked up crucial wickets for Wellington last season.
There is expected to be some rain around in Hamilton on Saturday. The rain might have a role to play in the game. The wet conditions would help the batsmen as it might get difficult for bowlers to grip the ball.
The pitch at the venue is generally good for batting. Earlier this year, a high-scoring game was witnessed between England and New Zealand in Hamilton. It does provide assistance to spinners in the second half of the game. One can expect a high-scoring game between Northern Knights and Wellington Firebirds.
Both teams might bowl first as the rain might play a role in the game. The Northern Knights will be well acquainted with the conditions and will be comfortable with batting second in the game.