Kia Super League – Some Analysis, Predictions… & Who We’re Supporting!

Now the lineups are finalised, we take a look at the 6 squads and offer some recklessly early predictions, which will doubtless come back to haunt us later this summer… plus, we reveal who we’re supporting!

Yorkshire Diamonds

Syd: Their squad looks hopelessly lopsided – they have 7 internationals, which leaves 4 spots for the county players… all-bar-one of whom is a bowler, which means I think we might be looking at 2-3 specialist outfielders!

Prediction: Group Stages

Raf: They’ve got Jenny Gunn, so that clearly makes the Diamonds one of the strongest pace bowling line-ups in the competition… but Twenty20 is a batsman’s game, and with a squad that’s disproportionately made up of bowlers, it’s going to be an uphill battle.

Prediction: Group Stages

Loughborough Lightning

Syd: They look a very balanced side, with a lot of all-rounders; and I like that someone hasn’t forgotten about Sonia Odedra – despite the disappointments she suffered in 2015, with Notts’ relegation and being dropped from the England setup, she is still a quality player with a heck of a lot to offer both as a batsman and a bowler.

Prediction: Final

Raf: Naming Elwiss as captain is possibly a bit of a risk; but it’s hard to see past a team that includes not just Ellyse Perry but Dane van Niekerk AND Sophie Devine. With access to the best cricket facilities in the country, I think it might just prove impossible for the other teams to #CatchTheLightning so they are who I’m supporting!

Prediction: Winners

Surrey Stars

Syd: Their Melbourne namesakes were basically “The Meg Lanning Show” – when she performed they won, and when she didn’t they didn’t, and I wonder if that might be the case here too? But I do have to say that I like their talented youngsters – Alex Hartley, Sophia Dunkley and Cordelia Griffith – so I’m hoping they can step up and shine a home-grown light.

Prediction: Semis

Raf: A good mixture of experience (great to see Beth Morgan in their line-up) and youth (I suspect KSL could be the making of Alex Hartley); but as a Middlesex fan, I just can’t bring myself to support a team with “Surrey” in the title!

Prediction: Semis

Western Storm

Syd: This is “My” team, I think – what a batting line-up! With a great mix of powerful hitters like Priest and Lee, and more “anchory” players like Wilson and Luff, and then Knight able to play either game according to how the dice fall, I think they are set to do some maximum damage on the good pitches we are expecting for KSL. They do come with a word of warning though: if you go to watch… just don’t park your car too near the boundary!

Prediction: Winners

Raf: With the likes of Izzy Westbury, Fran Wilson, Sophie Luff, Anya Shrubsole and Lizelle Lee, this is clearly a side with the advantage of #BathLove – and one with talent in all departments: including one of the world’s leading wicketkeepers in Rachel Priest. Could go far… but will they?

Prediction: Semis

Lancashire Thunder

Syd: They got dead-lucky with the withdrawal of Jess Jonassen, allowing them to pick the player of the moment Hayley Matthews instead; so they are very strong on the international front; but ALL their county players are from the Lancashire side who were relegated without winning a game in Div 1 last season; so 10 points for loyalty, but I think they’ll find it very tough.

Prediction: Group Stages

Raf: They’re looking strong in the spin department with both up-and-coming Academy star Sophie Ecclestone (who had a pretty decent tour of Sri Lanka), as well as their new signing Hayley Matthews; but I still think they might struggle to make Finals Day.

Prediction: Group Stages

Southern Vipers

Syd: They’ve got Lottie… they’ve got Suzie Bates… and yet somehow I’m still not quite convinced. I’m super-pleased for ex Academy glove-butler Carla Rudd and Berkshire fast bowler Daisy Gardner though – they totally deserve their opportunity in Super League and I’ll be rooting for them… when they aren’t up against the Storm!

Prediction: Semis

Raf: I wouldn’t bet against (or want to bowl against!) any side that has Arran Brindle in its middle order; and it seems a distinct advantage that coach Nick Denning and Berkshire players Daisy Gardner, Lissy Macleod, Fi Morris and Carla Rudd will all be used to working together. And that’s without mentioning the little matter of Edwards and Bates opening the batting!

Prediction: Final

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4 thoughts on “Kia Super League – Some Analysis, Predictions… & Who We’re Supporting!

  1. I have to follow Raf’s example and say it will be hard to watch a team full of players from my county arch-rivals (but watch them I will). Sussex players seem scattered to the four winds so could it be the Storm that’s gets my allegiance with Rosalie Fairbairn and Freya Davies? Maybe… or could it be…

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      • I’ve no idea, John, on the loyalty issue (I know question not aimed at me)! Been loyal Sussex supporter for many years now – even back in the days when County Champs meant 5 days at Cambridge – so going to be hard to get used to a system where there’s no ‘natural’ loyalty to any one side. Even got involved as Chairman of Sussex WCA. One major difference between KSL and other similar tournaments – men’s and women’s around the world is that teams don’t naturally link to a city (IPL) or a county – well some do, some don’t. The Vipers – the closest geographically to Sussex I guess, has only three current Sussex players. If the KSL has a major flaw, that would seem to be it – no obvious fan base – it’ll have to be built from scratch. And there’s no reason why it shouldn’t be but it’s a handicap at kick-off so to speak, that might have been avoided. I’ll be blogging on that shortly at http://www.womenscricket.net

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