Sydney Sixers veteran Dan Christian has overcome his initial ambivalence to the Big Bash League’s new rules, saying they have added “extra excitement” to the T20 format.
Christian helped snare the Sixers a bonus point win against Brisbane Heat on the Gold Coast on Sunday night, ensuring Sydney snuck past their rival’s 10-over total to win the newly introduced “Bash Boost” point before smashing three sixes and a four in the power surge to turn the game in his side’s favour.
Christian (61* off 38) smashed a four from the final ball of the match to seal the victory but acknowledged the part the power surge – the block of two power-play overs a team can use in the second half of their innings – played in the win.
“(It) has been huge for us really in every game,” Christian said.
“All of our wins, I would say have been decided by the (power surge), whether we bowled well in it or whether we batted well in it, it seems to really set you up.”
As an all-rounder, Christian sees both sides of the equation.
“I’ve got the interesting role of having to bat and bowl in it,” he said.
“I absolutely hate bowling in it. It’s shocking to have to bowl to blokes who are set with the field up.
“But I suppose from a batting point of view I’ve got to try and cash in and make up for what I do with the ball.”
And despite not initially believing the game needed tinkering with, Christian hopes the new rules – including the Bash Boost and X-factor replacement – stay after this season’s trial.
“It’ll be interesting to see if it catches on around the world, if some of the other comps will end up doing it, but I think it’s made these games here have a little bit of extra excitement,” he said.
“The way the games have panned out has been interesting. The starts have been a lot slower, teams are only getting 60 to 80 off the first 10, whereas in the past you might go a little bit harder but then are really cashing in at the back end and getting 120-130 in some instances.
“I’m old school, I don’t like change too much. I think the game was in a really good place, but in saying that, I think it’s been really fantastic and has really generated some excitement and some interest into the BBL so far this year.”
Sunday’s victory maintained the Sixers’ unbeaten run at Metricon Stadium on the Gold Coast this season, something Christian said was a bonus given their inability to play at the SCG due to COVID-19.
“Obviously with what’s happening with COVID and being unable to play at the SCG has been really disappointing for us, but we’ve made this a little bit of a fortress to be undefeated here,” he said.
Unable to play games that were scheduled for the Sydney this week, the Sixers will head to Canberra to take on the Sydney Thunder and Perth Scorchers, with the Thunder’s clash against the Hobart Hurricanes on January 18 also to be held at Manuka Oval.