Hobart Hurricanes all-rounder Meg Phillips is confident her side has the depth to cover the substantial loss of Hayley Matthews, starting this weekend in its back-to-back contests with the powerhouse Sydney Sixers.
The ‘Canes will be without star West Indian all-rounder Hayley Matthews for the next four to six weeks following the knee injury she suffered at West Park last weekend, with English spinner Alex Hartley coming into the squad to replace her.
“I don’t think it is going to affect us at all,’’ Phillips said on Friday about Matthews’ impending absence.
“I think it has obviously been quite unlucky having Hayley and her injury and she has been unlucky with that, so I think as a team we will be moving forward and looking to put in a good performance at home.”
Phillips has been one of the stars of the ‘Canes 1-2 start to WBBL04, one of six players with five wickets for the year.
She has a bowling average of 18.60 and an economy rate of 8.45 to go with it.
“I am certainly happy to be contributing to the team’s performance and hopefully going forward continuing that and we can keep getting a few wins,’’ the 22-year-old from Evandale said.
The ‘Canes will face a challenge with the Sixers, whose squad features national stars Ellyse Perry, Alyssa Healy and Ashleigh Gardner.
“The Sixers have had a pretty similar team list for the last few years now, so we know all the girls fairly well and have played against them enough, so we are looking to put in some good performances,’’ Phillips said.
The Hurricanes will face the Sixers (weather permitting) at 7pm on Saturday and at 1.50pm on Sunday at Blundstone Arena as part of the “The Big Weekend” festival of cricket.
The Adelaide Strikers and Sydney Thunder will also be in town, clashing at 2.20pm on Saturday and 10.10am on Sunday.
It will be the third such weekend of WBBL held around the country to start this summer’s competition.
“I think they did a really get job at Junction (Oval in Melbourne) and also in Sydney last week, so I think it is really exciting that we get to do it down in Tassie and get all the fans along, enjoy it and have a good time,’’ Phillips said.
One of the inclusions is batter Mikayla Hinkley, with the New South Wales product coming in as an injury replacement for Emma Thompson.
The 20-year-old said she was ready to go if called up and that she was “so excited to be here on the Cane Train”.
Hobart will play three matches in four days, with this weekend’s contests followed by a home clash against the Perth Scorchers on Tuesday.
Ashley Day has also been included in the 15-player squad for all three games.
A trio of changes 🧐— HurricanesWBBL (@HurricanesWBBL) December 13, 2018
We've named a 15-player squad for our upcoming matches in Hobart.
We'll face the Sixers in two rebel Big Weekend matches, followed by a clash with the Scorchers on Tuesday 👊