SuperCoach BBL player advice: Matthew Kelly Perth Scorchers career stats
Few players have made the impact Matthew Kelly has in their first 12 Big Bash League games.
Perth Scorchers quick Kelly has been largely a back-up to Jason Behrendorff., Nathan Coutler-Nile, Andrew Tye and Jhye Richardson in recent seasons.
But in BBL08, only Tye (17 wickets, 14 games) and Coulter-Nile (14, 13 games) took more wickets for Perth than Kelly (11), despite the 24-year-old only featuring in seven matches.
It confirmed the potential Kelly displayed in five BBL07 games, when he snared eight wickets, was no flash in the pan.
Kelly is set to be the beneficiary of Coulter-Nile’s switch to Melbourne Stars, while Behrendorff (back surgery) has been ruled out for the summer and Tye (elbow) is unlikely to feature.
The Scorchers have signed leg-spinner Fawad Ahmed to complement Australian T20 tweaker Ashton Agar, but Kelly shapes as the spearhead of their attack alongside Richardson.
Perth otherwise has inexperienced duo Aaron Hardie, Cameron Green and captain Mitch Marsh to call on.
Kelly is the ninth-most expensive paceman in SuperCoach BBL, listed at $165,100 behind players such as Kane Richardson ($214,300), Sean Abbott ($195,300) and Dale Steyn ($169,000).
However, it is worth being mindful of Perth’s Round 3 double when choosing your initial side.
Unless you can find room for Adelaide Strikers Alex Carey ($139,800) and Rashid Khan ($203,300) in your starting team, you will need to devote at least two of your six trades to the pair before they feature twice in Round 3.
A third trade will also likely be needed to fund the Khan move.
The popular option will be to start Scorchers cheaper than Kelly such as Ahmed ($113,000), Agar ($133,200) or Englishman Liam Livingstone ($125,000).
If you have the budget left to squeeze Kelly in, it will allow you to devote any funds for upgrading to Khan.
You don’t want to miss out on either Kelly or Khan because you’ve spent your budget to acquire one of the pair.
Kelly has the third-best career strike rate of any bowler in BBL history, taking a wicket every 14.5 balls.
That equates to three wickets in a double game round, which Perth has in Round 3.
If you can’t find the spare cash to start Kelly, ensure he’s in your plans for when the Scorchers play Adelaide and Melbourne.
You risk being scorched otherwise.
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Originally published as SuperCoach: Is this BBL’s most underrated player?