2018-2019 Super Smash League – Northern Knights vs Central Stags Preview & Prediction

AT A GLANCE

When? Sunday 17th February, 03:10 (UK)

Where? Seddon Park

Weather? 25-26c with plenty of cloud cover although the chance of rain is minimal

What channel is it on? This match will not be televised live in the UK

Where can I stream the match? This match cannot be streamed in the UK

Are tickets still available? https://premier.ticketek.co.nz/shows/show.aspx?sh=NZCSMASH19

THE TEAM NEWS

NORTHERN KNIGHTS

Coach: James Pamment

Captain: Dean Brownlie

  • Northern Knights will be hoping to start this Grand Final well after losing their last two games but have enjoyed a week off to rest up and prepare after finishing top of the ladder with seven wins.
  • The Knights have been given a mammoth late boost with New Zealand pair Tim Southee and Mitchell Santner set to feature after they were released from the Blackcaps’ squad having not made the XI against Bangladesh in the 2nd ODI.
  • This will be Southee’s first appearance for the Knights this season if he plays as expected and will line-up alongside a strong team with the likes of Daryl Mitchell, Scott Kuggeleijn and Ish Sodhi returning to the squad to pose a formidable prospect for the Stags.

CENTRAL STAGS

Coach: Heinrich Malan

Captain: Will Young

  • Central Stags progressed to the Grand Final despite being hampered by some bad luck in the build-up to their elimination final with Auckland Aces with Josh Clarkson suffering a groin tear and Blair Tickner spraining an ankle in a freak injury in practice.
  • Amazingly, Tickner has been declared fit for the final and makes the 13-man squad in a massive boost for the Stags with the pace bowler in great form recently having made his Blackcaps debut and he remains the leading wicket-taker in this year’s Super Smash.
  • After the 44-run win over the Aces, the Stags must get themselves mentally prepared for another huge game in quick succession but were on the end of a big defeat the last time these two teams squared off.

THE PREDICTION

Northern Knights have named an extremely strong squad for this Grand Final and look like the team to beat. With plenty of Blackcaps in both squads, they are going to be the key to which way this final goes but the Knights have some incredible talent at their disposal. The Stags are capable of winning but will be desperately hoping leading wicket-taker Blair Tickner is fit and raring to go after missing the elimination final. It wouldn’t be a huge surprise to see the Stags claim the win but the Knights should have too much in this clash for the Super Smash title.