Star trio join Big Bash commentary team | Big Bash League BBL
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Star trio join Big Bash commentary team

19 October 2016

Symonds is one of three huge additions to the BBL coverage // Getty

Darren Lehmann, Andrew Symonds and Brendon McCullum set to step behind the microphone for BBL|06

Australia coach Darren Lehmann, larger-than-life allrounder Andrew Symonds and ex-New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum are set to join Network Ten's KFC Big Bash League commentary team this summer.

The big-name trio will add further insight to the Logie-award winning BBL line-up, which will again feature regular expert commentators and former Australian teammates Adam Gilchrist, Ricky Ponting, Mark Waugh and Damien Fleming.

Symonds, who was never far from the headlines during his playing career, will join the Network Ten team for a four-match stint, while explosive opener McCullum will feature behind the microphone between his playing commitments with the Brisbane Heat.

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The former Black Caps leader will also bring viewers closer to the action on the field, wearing a helmet camera and microphone while batting for the Heat.

Bupa Support Team head coach Lehmann – whose son Jake plays for Adelaide Strikers - will make two appearances in the commentary box between his international coaching commitments.

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Network Ten also confirmed England great and current Melbourne Stars import Kevin Pietersen would again feature in their coverage of BBL|06.

"The addition of Symonds, Lehmann and McCullum to Network Ten’s commentary team ensures that our coverage of the KFC Big Bash League will continue to be a first-class television experience for fans of all ages," Network Ten Big Bash Executive David Barham said.

"Network Ten has the most exciting and contemporary cricket commentary team.

"To have the current Australian coach in the commentary box for the KFC Big Bash League is unprecedented for fans around the country and something that we are very much looking forward to.

"The KFC Big Bash League has gone from strength to strength on Network Ten over the past three years and we look forward to another bumper season this summer."

Earlier this year, Network Ten announced Roz Kelly was returning to their broadcast team for BBL|06.

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Kelly will co-host the broadcast alongside Gilchrist this summer, while Australian legends Mel Jones and Lisa Sthalekar will also return to feature in both BBL and Rebel Women's Big Bash League coverage.

"We cannot wait for the 2016-17 KFC Big Bash League season to start," Barham said.

"With some big player movements and international signings, this year will see the best line-up of on-field talent ever assembled."

The BBL was a ratings hit last summer, with television audiences jumping 25 per cent in capital cities and 16 per cent nationally, with an average audience of 1.04 million per match.

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A record-breaking 1.66 million viewers tuned in to the final to watch Sydney Thunder claim their maiden title, while Network Ten claimed a Logie Award for its coverage of the tournament, beating other nominated events including the Melbourne Cup and the Australian Open tennis grand slam to claim the prize for 'Most Outstanding Sports Coverage'.

The BBL|06 season will kick off in Sydney on December 20 when the Thunder and Sixers meet at Spotless Stadium.

Meg Lanning Steve Smith

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