Injury has thrown a big spanner in the works for the Adelaide Strikers three weeks out from the BBL season, with star West Indies recruit Kieron Pollard ruled out for the season after picking up a knee injury playing in South Africa's T20 competition.
Pollard's injury soured the news the Strikers had recruited emerging England leg-spinner Adil Rashid, who has come in for high praise from none other than Shane Warne.
While they are back to the drawing board and on the hunt for a new international marquee signing, the Strikers have boosted their bowling stocks for the the upcoming KFC Big Bash League season, re-signing left-arm tweaker Jon Holland and signing gigantic Queensland fast bowler Billy Stanlake.
It will be the third season Holland has spent with the club, having first joined the Strikers for BBL|03.
The 28–year-old has been in good form already this summer, picking up 14 wickets in seven games for the Commonwealth Bank Victoria Bushrangers during the Matador BBQs One-Day Cup earlier this month.
Watch: Holland classic beats Bancroft
That form will come in handy for the Strikers, who are expected to call on Holland's services more regularly in BBL|05, following the departures of spinners Adam Zampa (Melbourne Stars) and Johan Botha (Sydney Sixers).
Stanlake, standing at a dizzying 204cm, is the tallest bowler on the domestic circuit and impressed in his debut season for the myFoot Dr Queensland Bulls in the Matador Cup this month.
The 20-year-old right-armer’s performances with the new ball for the Bulls earned him selection in the Cricket Australia XI side to combat New Zealand in a two-day tour match in Canberra and praise from national selector Rod Marsh.
Watch: Stanlake stands tall for the Bulls
Adelaide’s other major coup to date has been the signature of Jason Gillespie as coach, while the Strikers have also added emerging young batsman Kelvin Smith to their line-up for the next two seasons.
Hailing from Bowhill in the Murraylands, Smith was originally named as the club’s Community Rookie in BBL|04 but earned a promotion to the senior list following an injury to paceman Chadd Sayers.
In: Billy Stanlake (Queensland), Adil Rashid (England), Patrick Page (development rookie), Usman Safi (community rookie).
Out: Johan Botha (Sixers), Shaun Tait (Hurricanes), Adam Zampa (Stars). Kieron Pollard (injury).
Retained: Jono Dean, Travis Head, Brad Hodge, Jon Holland, Ben Laughlin, Tim Ludeman, Michael Neser, Gary Putland, Kane Richardson, Alex Ross, Craig Simmons, Hamish Kingston, Kelvin Smith.
Membership details: New membership packages and a price freeze from BBL|04 are among the highlights of the Strikers’ offers for 2015-16, with all the info you need here.
Having already made their first major move in the player market by securing the world's No.1-ranked Twenty20 bowler in West Indian Samuel Badree, the Heat cranked their BBL|05 signings up another notch when they signed big-hitting New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum.
The acquisition of former Kiwi quick Shane Bond as an assistant coach added to the trans-Tasman theme, as he joined new head coach and former Black Cap Daniel Vettori at the club.
The Heat last week added BBL journeyman Luke Feldman to their ranks, with the my FoootDR Queensland Bulls paceman making the move to play in teal after representing four other BBL clubs, while former Renegades batsman Alex Doolan has also signed with the club.
The Heat’s fast-bowling unit is looking strong after they secured Australia A and Tasmania quick Andrew Fekete from the Melbourne Renegades, while allrounder Jason Floros has also re-signed.
Watch: Fekete takes first scalp of Shield season
James Hopes will continue on a one-year contract, while Brisbane fought off interest from several BBL rivals to re-sign the big-hitting Chris Lynn.
Former Australia allrounder Dan Christian has moved south to Hobart along with rising star Simon Milenko.
In: Samuel Badree (West Indies), Brendon McCullum (New Zealand), Andrew Fekete, Alex Doolan (both Renegades), Luke Feldman (Stars), Jack Wildermuth, Mitchell Swepson (Queensland).
Out: Dan Vettori (retired, now coach), Dan Christian, Simon Milenko (both Hobart), Andrew Flintoff (UK), Ryan Harris (retired), Shane Watson (Thunder)
Retained: Nick Buchanan, Joe Burns, Ben Cutting, Jason Floros, Peter Forrest, James Hopes, Chris Lynn, Jimmy Peirson, Nathan Reardon, Mark Steketee
Membership details: Heat fans were quick to take advantage of being offered the best seats at the Gabba this summer, with the all-new Gold Reserved membership already sold out. Fans can still get closer to the action than ever before with Premium and General Admission memberships available here.
Undoubtedly one of the biggest – if not the biggest – signing to ever land in the Big Bash, Hobart secured Sri Lanka legend Kumar Sangakarra on a two-year deal. The Sri Lankan addition will solidify their top order and also provide a third wicketkeeping option on the Apple Isle alongside Tim Paine and Ben Dunk.
The return of West Indian dynamo Darren Sammy means both international spots for BBL|05 have now been filled.
Watch: Sanga joins the Cane train
The Hurricanes have also signed 25-year-old spinner Clive Rose from the Melbourne Stars, and re-signed star batsman George Bailey, allrounder Timm van der Gugten and batsman Michael Hill, but lost spinner Xavier Doherty to the Melbourne Renegades.
In: Kumar Sangakkara (Sri Lanka), Shaun Tait (Adelaide), Dan Christian, Simon Milenko (both Brisbane), Clive Rose (Stars)
Out: Evan Gulbis, Ben Hilfenhaus (Stars), Alex Hales (UK), Shoaib Malik (Pakistan), Xavier Doherty (Renegades)
Retained: Tim Paine, Ben Dunk, Cameron Boyce, Darren Sammy, Jake Reed, Timm van der Gugten, Michael Hill, Sam Rainbird, Jon Wells, Beau Webster, George Bailey, Joe Mennie, Dom Michael.
Membership details: Memberships are already running hot and at the Hurricanes, with a strong flow of renewals and new members joining the Purple Army. Sign up here.
The Melbourne Renegades will boast possibly the most destructive opening combination in world cricket with Aaron Finch and West Indies firebrand Chris Gayle at the top of the order for BBL|05.
Gayle ends a two-year absence from the BBL after a previous stint with the Sydney Thunder and the club is hoping his power hitting lifts the roof at Etihad. At least Finch won't be the only batsman capable of peppering the tip of the Renegades’ home ground this summer.
Gayle joins another big coup for the Renegades in Cameron White, who joins from cross-town rivals the Melbourne Stars where he had been captain. White will now be shuffled down the order to accommodate Gayle's arrival.
Gayle joins the Renegades
The Renegades have also acquired the services of World Cup squad spinner Xavier Doherty from the Hurricanes and will have a new coach in David Saker, who is also Victoria's first-class coach, as they hope to tip the balance of power the red-half of Melbourne's way.
Test gloveman Peter Nevill will again share 'keeping duties with Matthew Wade, who will miss the opening of the BBL season after suffering a fractured collarbone in the nets with Victoria in mid November.
Wade was hit on the right shoulder in the nets just before the Bushrangers' Sheffield Shield clash with WA and surgery ruled him out for six weeks.
The Renegades boosted their bowling stocks with the signings of former Australia Test spinner Nathan Hauritz and emerging young paceman Chris Tremain, both from the Thunder. However, Fawad Ahmed's move to the Sydney Thunder was a blow for the club.
In: Cameron White (Stars), Chris Gayle (West Indies), Xavier Doherty (Hurricanes), Nathan Hauritz (Thunder), Chris Tremain (Thunder)
Out: Ben Rohrer, Fawad Ahmed (both Sydney Thunder), Andrew Fekete, Alex Doolan (both Heat), Aaron O'Brien (delisted)
Retained: Aaron Finch, Matthew Wade, Peter Siddle, James Pattinson, Callum Ferguson, Nathan Rimmington, Tom Cooper, Tom Beaton, Matthew Short, Nick Winter, Dwayne Bravo, Peter Nevill
Membership details: It’s your turn to #GetonRed this season! Join the Melbourne Renegades for BBL|05 – two and five game memberships available. Sign up here.
The Melbourne Stars were dealt a major blow when marquee signing and new captain Michael Clarke decided to take an extended break from cricket.
It left the Stars searching for a new skipper, following the departure of Cameron White to cross-town rivals the Renegades, and the breach was filled by veteran David Hussey.
However in good news, the team has appointed former New Zealand skipper Stephen Fleming as head coach, who has been coaching IPL powerhouse Chennai Super Kings.
The addition of Adam Zampa from the Strikers is a boon for the club and the young leggie, while their two international spots are secure with England internationals Kevin Pietersen and Luke Wright to return.
Zampa late strike stuns Scorchers
In: Adam Zampa (Strikers), Evan Gulbis, Ben Hilfenhaus (Hurricanes)
Out: Cameron White (Melbourne Renegades), Jackson Bird (Sydney Sixers), Clive Rose (Hurricanes), Luke Feldman (Heat), Clint McKay (Thunder)
Retained: Michael Beer, Scott Boland, James Faulkner, Peter Handscomb, Sam Harper, John Hastings, David Hussey, James Faulkner, Glenn Maxwell, Kevin Pietersen, Rob Quiney, Marcus Stoinis, Tom Triffitt, Dan Worrall, Luke Wright.
Membership details: Sign up here.
Big-hitting England allrounder David Willey has signed with reigning Big Bash champions, after the England and Wales Cricket Board gave Willey permission to miss the England Lions tour of the United Arab Emirates in December to play in BBL|05 with the Scorchers.
Watch: Willey blasts 40-ball T20 century
Big Bash champions for the past two seasons, the Scorchers have perhaps the most settled squad in the competition.
The club has locked in the bulk of their championship-calibre team to new deals, however. Energetic veteran Brad Hogg is a cult hero in the west and, after lighting it up with the Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL, has chosen to go around again at age 44.
Perth remain the pace setters and will again be the team to beat.
In: David Willey (England)
Retained: Ashton Agar, Cameron Bancroft, Jason Behrendorff, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Michael Klinger, Mitch Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Simon Mackin, James Muirhead, Joel Paris, Ashton Turner, Andrew Tye, Adam Voges, Sam Whiteman, Brad Hogg
Membership details: The Scorchers’ silver membership has already sold out and all other memberships are going fast, so sign up here before you miss out.
The Sixers have secured their head coach for the upcoming season, with former Melbourne Stars mentor Greg Shipperd taking the role vacated by Trevor Bayliss, who departed to coach England.
The men in magenta will be keen to atone for last year's near miss in the Big Final and go one step further in BBL|05. To that end, they've secured the services of fast bowler Jackson Bird and international spin bowler Johan Botha.
Bird was potent with the new ball for the Stars
Both have been given three-year contracts and are likely to form the back-bone of the bowling attack in BBL|05. The addition of Botha from Adelaide also adds some steel to the lower-order batting.
There has been no official word on player releases, but the BBL|04 runners-up will be without fast-bowling legend Brett Lee who has retired.
They still have one international spot to fill, with their playing roster again likely to be impacted by the international duty of their many Australia representatives.
In: Johan Botha (Strikers), Jackson Bird (Stars), Li Kai Ming (community rookie).
Out: Brett Lee (retired)
Retained: Sean Abbott, Doug Bollinger, Ryan Carters, Ben Dwarshuis, Brad Haddin, Josh Hazlewood, Moises Henriques, Nathan Lyon, Nic Maddinson, Stephen O'Keefe, Jordan Silk, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Michael Lumb, Mickey Edwards.
Membership details: Memberships on sale soon! Register your interest for BBL|05 Membership here.
The Sydney Thunder unveiled Australia allrounder Shane Watson as their marquee signing for BBL|05, and will benefit from the 34-year-old’s decision to retire from Test cricket.
Watson signed a three-year deal with the BBL franchise, with the allrounder likely to eventually succeed Mike Hussey at the top of the Thunder’s batting line-up and take on a leadership role in future seasons.
West Indies allrounder Andre Russell has also signed up for the Green Machine for BBL|05 while the Thunder also bolstered their bowling stocks with the signing of former international paceman Clint McKay.
The Victorian, who played the last four BBL seasons for the Melbourne Stars, brings with him an impressive resume having collected 97 wickets in 59 one-day internationals, including a hat-trick against England in 2013.
Meanwhile, two of the Thunder’s longest-serving players will return to Thunder Nation in BBL|05, with Gurinder Sandhu and Usman Khawaja re-signing for the next two seasons.
Fawad traded red for green in BBL|05
The Thunder were quick to kick off the off-season action when they secured Ben Rohrer from the Melbourne Renegades, and the club then dipped into the same well to poach Australian Test squad leg-spinner Fawad Ahmed.
Teenage sensation Jake Doran caused a stir with his switch from New South Wales to Tasmania for first-class cricket but the 18-year-old has signed on to remain with the Thunder after making his debut late in BBL|04.
South Africa superstar Jacques Kallis is confirmed to return for BBL|05, while Hussey has been confirmed to lead the team for another season.
In: Ben Rohrer, Fawad Ahmed (both Renegades), Shane Watson (Heat), Clint McKay (Stars), Andre Russell (West Indies).
Out: Nathan Hauritz (Renegades), Chris Tremain (Renegades)
Retained: Aiden Blizzard, Patrick Cummins, Jake Doran, Chris Hartley, Jacques Kallis, Andrew McDonald, Usman Khawaja, Gurinder Sandhu, Chris Green, Mike Hussey, Kurtis Patterson
Membership details: It’s all happening at Thunder Nation ahead of BBL|05! The club has sold out of the premium 5-Game package for the first time, but you can still get a BBL|05 ticketed Adult Membership from just $45. This year Members will also enjoy exclusive access to a day at the Sydney 500 V8 Super Car Carnival, the Royal Easter Show and the APIA Tennis Carnival. In BBL|04 there was a massive turnout of 32,823 to the Sydney Smash at ANZ Stadium, and with Spotless Stadium having a capacity of 23,000, the only way you can guarantee a seat for the derby is with a membership. Sign up here.
Last updated November 26, 2015