The Wellington Firebirds have their sights set on a third Grand Final in as many years when they face the Canterbury Kings in tomorrow’s Elimination Final at University of Otago Oval in Dunedin.
The back-to-back reigning champions will take the longer route to the big dance than in previous seasons with a clash against their familiar foes from Canterbury to decide who faces the top-placed Northern Brave men at Seddon Park in Hamilton on Sunday.
Firebirds head coach said his side were relaxed and full of confidence ahead of tomorrow’s matchup.
“As a group we’re in a good place and we’re pumped to be involved in another Super Smash finals week,’ he said.
“We understand the pressure of finals cricket and we’ve had a lot of positive experiences in finals over the last four years, so we go into this match with confidence.
“We always enjoy heading down to Dunedin and we’ve had success at University of Otago Oval in the past – T20 finals cricket is often decided in those pressure moments, and we’ll be looking to apply all of our experience from those scenarios in the last couple of years to hopefully come away on top.”
The Firebirds boast the men’s competition’s leading run scorer in Michael Bracewell – the skipper has amassed 397 runs at an average of 79 so far in the competition, including his record-breaking unbeaten 141 against the Central Stags in round seven.
Explosive opener Finn Allen has followed up his breakout summer last year with a solid campaign – the 22-year-old is the third leading run scorer in the men’s competition with 268 and showed he’s in good form with 68 off just 28 balls in the Firebirds round 10 loss to the Brave on Monday.
The Firebirds have won two out of their last three matches against the Kings, including last year’s Grand Final at the Cello Basin Reserve where they lifted the Super Smash title for the second time in a row after a five-wicket win.
Play gets underway at midday at the University of Otago Oval in Dunedin and will be broadcast LIVE on Spark Sport.
Wellington Firebirds squad | Dream11 Super Smash Elimination Final | v Canterbury KingsMichael Bracewell (c) (Eastern Suburbs)Finn Allen (wk) (Petone-Riverside)Hamish Bennett (North City)Tom Blundell (Karori)Devon Conway (VUWCC)Troy Johnson (Hutt District)Jimmy Neesham (Hutt District)Ollie Newton (Upper Hutt United)Rachin Ravindra (Hutt District)Ben Sears (Hutt District)Nathan Smith (Johnsonville)Logan Van Beek (Taita District)Peter Younghusband (Karori)
Article added: Wednesday 26 January 2022
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