Sydney Thunder History
The Sydney Thunder has been a team playing the Big Bash League (BBL) since the league's inception in 2011-12. Their home ground is the Sydney Showground Stadium, having a housing capacity of 21,500. Between 2011 and the majority of 2015, their home ground was the Stadium Australia at Sydney Olympic Park. The Sydney team has won a single title that came in the tournament's fifth edition in 2015-2016.
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Sydney Thunder players are dressed in lime green, which is in pleasant contrast to their counterparts, Sydney Sixers, who appear in magenta.
The Sydney Thunder WBBL team is their women's team and have won 2 WBBL titles. They are also the joint, most successful team in the WBBL, with Sydney Sixers and the Brisbane Heat women's teams.
The Sydney Thunder's most prolific player so far has been Michael Hussey. He played 12 games for the Sydney Thunder in 2015 and 2016. Scoring 360 runs at an incredible average of 40.00. Hussey also managed a single 30-plus score and two half-centuries with a strike rate of 133.8. Hussey's captaincy was instrumental in leading the Thunders to their only title.
Sydney Thunder Owner
The Sydney Thunder, just like the other seven teams in the BBL, is not under a private ownership model. The state cricket body, Sydney Cricket Association, owns both Sydney teams, namely the Thunders and Sixers.
Sydney Thunder Players
The following are the players who competed for the Thunders in the 2021-2022 season.
- Usman Khawaja (appointed captain)
- Chris Green (stand-in captain)
- Alex Hales
- Alex Ross
- Jason Sangha
- Olivier Davies
- Daniel Sams
- Ben Cutting
- Nathan McAndrew
- Sam Billings
- Sam Whiteman
- Baxter Holt
- Matt Gilkes
- Saqib Mahmood
- Chris Tremain
- Brendan Doggett
- Gurinder Sandhu
- Jono Cook
- Tanveer Sangha
Sydney Thunder Previous Captains and Coaches
Sydney Thunder has had 12 captains in its 11-year-long journey in the BBL. Their former captain Michael Hussey led them to their only title in 2016. Michael is an ODI World Cup winner who was a part of the Australian men's squad that reached the 2010 T20 World Cup final. The Sydney Thunder team have been captained by Shane Watson, Chris Gayle, and Callum Ferguson. Their current captain is Chris Green, with Jason Sangha as a stand-in captain.
The "Thunder nation" is coached by Trevor Bayliss, a World Cup-winning and a two-time IPL winning coach with the Kolkata Knight Riders.
Past performance of Sydney Thunder in BBL
The Thunders did not have a great time in the initial years of the tournament. They finished at the bottom of the table for three consecutive seasons between 2012 and 2014. In 2015, they fared slightly better, finishing in the 7th spot.
Post winning their first three games and having players like Michael Hussey, Shane Watson, Jacques Kallis, and Usman Khawaja, Sydney Thunder lost four in a row! Now needing a win of their final league match, they beat their arch-rivals Sydney Sixers only for the second time in the tournament's history. In the semi-final, they faced the Adelaide Strikers. Usman Khawaja's unbeaten 104 off just 59 deliveries guided them to the final. The Melbourne Stars piled on 176 for 9, thanks to Kevin Pietersen's 74 off 39 deliveries. However, Usman again came to their rescue with 70 off 40 balls. Thunder eventually scraped through with three balls remaining and three wickets in hand to land their first title.
Michael Hussey retired after the final. However, the Thunders could not capitalise on their win, finishing at the bottom the very next year. Following that year, they finished 6th in back-to-back seasons. While Shane Watson led from the front, the Thunder could not put together a winning streak in the league.
However, between 2020 and 2022, the Thunder managed to bring their act together. They managed to reach the playoffs in all three seasons. Their rivals Melbourne Stars, eliminated them in the qualifier to determine the second finalist of 2020. A playoff loss to Brisbane Heat in 2021 ended their journey. The Sydney Thunder's last match was against the Adelaide Strikers in 2022, which they lost narrowly by six runs, ending their campaign prematurely.
Key Players of Sydney Thunder
Usman Khawaja: Usman joined the Sydney team in their first season, and he has remained loyal to the club. His key performances were instrumental in landing the Thunders their very first title in 2016.
Usman has played 55 innings for the Thunder, scoring 1615 runs at an average of 32.95. He has a decent top-order strike rate of 128.6. Usman has ten, 30-plus scores, eight half-centuries, and two centuries to his name. One of those centuries came in the semi-final of their title-winning season.
Usman has also been captain of the Sydney Thunder, leading the side for two games. He did not feature in most BBL 2022 matches due to personal reasons. However, when he returns, he will be the one to watch in fantasy cricket games due to his match-winning ability. We hope that he returns in the coming season.
Alex Hales: Alex is one of the best opening batsmen in fantasy cricket gaming and has one of the highest strike rates amongst openers in the BBL. He joined the Thunder in 2020 and has not looked back since then.
Alex scored 1391 runs in 41 innings at an excellent average of 37.59. He has nine 30-plus scores, ten half-centuries, and a century to his name. With an astonishing strike rate of 152.9, he became the tournament's top scorer.
Alex is also the first-ever England batsman to score a T20I hundred. While he has not played regularly in recent times for England due to their great pool of talent, if given a chance, he could become a key figure in England's run at the 2022 T20 World Cup later this year.
Likely predictions for Sydney Thunder in BBL 2022
The Sydney Thunder has a decent squad, but the Sydney Sixers and Perth Scorchers are far better at the moment. The Thunders will have to take some drastic steps to have a chance of winning another league title. A few changes to their squad are necessary.
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