Finish: 5th (7 wins, 7 losses)
Most runs: Elyse Villani (403 at 44.77)
Most wickets: Heather Graham (22 at 16.95)
What went right: Graham had a breakthrough season in orange, with several key innings with the bat backing up her form with the ball. When they were fit, Villani and captain Meg Lanning were forces to be reckoned with.
What went wrong: With a list like the Scorchers’, they’d be disappointed not to have made finals. But injuries to Lanning and Villani at different points during the season hurt them badly, while they also lost Nicole Bolton late in the season. Graham didn’t have any teammates backing her up with the ball, showing the hole left by injured England allrounder Katherine Brunt.
Finish: 6th (5 wins, 8 losses, 1 no result)
Most runs: Sophie Devine (556 at 46.33)
Most wickets: Sophie Devine (14 at 21.71)
What went right: Devine had easily her best season for the Strikers, dominating with the bat while also doing damage with the ball. Suzie Bates was also prolific with the bat, while Tahlia McGrath started showing signs of good batting form late in the season. And of course, Devine’s Headband Challenge!
What went wrong: The stats above say it all: there simply wasn’t anyone backing up Devine and her compatriot Bates. Their next highest run scorer was McGrath, who averaged 19.71 and with the ball, the world’s best T20 bowler Megan Schutt didn’t have the season she’d have liked, while leg-spinner Amanda-Jade Wellington also didn’t perform as well as previous seasons.
Finish: 7th (5 wins, 8 losses, 1 no result)
Most runs: Lizelle Lee (276 at 23)
Most wickets: Alana King (12 at 22.25)
What went right: The Stars couldn’t have asked for a better start to the season, defeating reigning champions Sydney Sixers thanks to a Lee century. Angela Reakes showed promising signs after her move south, Alana King produced some brilliant displays of leg-spin, off-spinner Erin Osborne wound back the clock at times, while teenage quick Annabel Sutherland is a star in the making.
What went wrong: The Stars probably outperformed their list in the early stages of the season when they sat in the top four, but a lack of depth hurt them as the tournament progressed. Captain Kristen Beams’ injury comeback meant she didn’t have the same impact as previous seasons, while South Africa import Lee was inconsistent after her brilliant opening weekend century. Her countrywoman Mignon du Preez also showed flashes without consistency, while they didn’t get the output they would have liked from England’s Georgia Elwiss, who averaged 16.12 with the bat and took just three wickets.
They said: “It’s heartbreaking to miss out on the finals, when you start the season you’re filled with hope and we really thought we had a list together we thought we good have pushed for finals. But there’s been some really good performances by some individual players, we’ve seen some of the players r grow into roles.” – Stars captain Kristen Beams
Finish: 8th (2 wins, 12 losses)
Most runs: Heather Knight (374 at 34.11)
Most wickets: Alana King (14 at 21.71)
What went right: The Hurricanes pushed plenty of teams this season and were involved in plenty of close results – including being on the losing end of two Super Overs – but just weren’t able to get themselves over the line when it came down to the crunch. Erin Fazackerley is a promising find at the top of the order and hopefully finds the consistency to match her free-wheeling batting as she matures, while the return of Heather Knight, both with bat and ball, was a welcome sight for Hurricanes fans.
What went wrong: Unfortunately, plenty. It started when Hayley Matthews injured her knee on the second weekend of matches, ruling her out of the season, with her replacement Alex Hartley unable to have the same impact the West Indies allrounder is capable of. Star India batter Smriti Mandhana also couldn’t continue what had been a golden year of run scoring Down Under, averaging 24.46 with just two half-centuries for the tournament.
They said: “It started at the start of the season we lost six games we could have won … but we should be proud of the way we’ve brought the season back, we’ve fought hard. It’s just learning how to win, sometimes you just can’t get yourself over the line and we need to figure out how to do that.” – Alex Hartley