Player moves are starting to happen for a BBL season set to be played in “villages” with beanpole fast bowler Billy Stanlake moving to the Melbourne Stars from the Adelaide Strikers.
In a straight player swap, Stars quick Daniel Worrall moves to the Strikers in return for Stanlake.
With COVID-19 set to impact the BBL, teams are set to play out of moving “villages”, the term being used by BBL officials instead of hubs, across the season, which is likely to be delayed from its December 3 start.
The movement of players is set to pick up with the trade window open after officials abandoned plans for a player draft for international players.
Several big names, including foundation Stars batsman Peter Handscomb, are likely to move clubs. Hobart is believed to be his likely new home.
England batsman Dawid Malan, who has taken to the Australian bowlers in the opening two T20 games in Southampton, is also in talks to come to the BBL this season.
Malan, the number five ranked T20 batsman in the world, scored 66 from 43 balls in the first game to win the player of the match award and then 42 from 32 in game two.
“There has been some contact with one of the clubs,” Malan said on Monday.
“That’s still ongoing at the moment, so hopefully we can finish and finalise that soon and hopefully that can get announced. I don’t know if I’m allowed yet (to say which club), so I’ll sit on the fence with that one.”
The Sydney Sixers are also believed to be chasing all-rounder Dan Christian from the Renegades.
Stanlake moves to the Stars on a three-year deal.
“The Melbourne Stars have been a very successful club for a long time in the BBL. While they haven’t lifted the trophy yet, they have been a serious contender almost every season, and I hope I can contribute to taking that final step,” Stanlake said.
“I’m looking forward to meeting up with the guys later in the year and getting stuck into what I’m sure will be a slightly different campaign to normal, but it’ll be great to get under way.”
Stars Coach David Hussey said Stanlake would bring a different dimension to the bowling unit.
“It’s never that nice as a batsman to have the ball coming down from that height at you, and when Billy is up in the 140km zone with a good yorker and bouncer, he’s a very difficult bowler to contend with,” Hussey said
“I’d also like to thank Dan Worrall for his commitment to the Stars over many seasons. He has been a good performer for the Stars, and we wish him well as he continues his BBL career at home in Adelaide.”