A victory over eventual champions Thunder was one of the few bright spots on an otherwise bleak campaign for the Apple Islanders and with their squad arguably weakened it’s difficult to see how they could break back into the finals this time around.
Kumar Sangakkara is all class but probably didn’t justify the pay packet after failing to make the most of his starts and enters what surely will be his swansong under some pressure to deliver following the off-season departure of Ben Dunk.
That aside, usual suspects Tim Paine and George Bailey will be expected to provide the bulk of the runs.
Pantomime villain Stuart Broad is likely to get plenty of stick off Australian crowds but gives the Hurricanes a viable new ball option and will link with the team after the cessation of England’s Test series in India, although he has been troubled by a recent tendon injury to his right foot.
His ability to control the run rate in the early overs will be key in a line-up also containing ‘The Wild Thing’ Shaun Tait (pictrued above), who will take wickets but also bowls a lot of ‘four balls’ and has never been noted for his miserly economy levels.
Overall, the Hurricanes appear to lack the depth of some of the other franchises and may need to rely on some brilliant individual performances for their wins.
Unibet Odds: 11.00
Last Season: 7th