Southern Brave suffered a 60-run defeat to Northern Superchargers on Sunday in The Hundred and they are aiming to bounce back at Lord’s, where they take on London Spirit at 6.30pm on Tuesday, 8th August.
London Spirit welcomed back England Test star Zak Crawley after Ashes duty for Saturday’s rain-affected clash with Manchester Originals and he will hope to get a chance to impress with the bat this time around.
Southern Brave are likely to be without Chris Jordan, who injured his calf during a match winning innings of 70 not out against Welsh Fire last week.
London Spirit to win – 20/21
London Spirit lost their first match of The Hundred season against capital rivals Oval Invincibles, going down by three wickets off the 99th ball of the Invincibles’ innings.
Saturday’s trip to Old Trafford to face the Originals ended in a no result after Jos Buttler had given the Spirit bowlers a bit of a pasting, but they can bounce back against the Brave at Lord’s.
The Brave have lost seven of their last ten matches over the past two seasons of The Hundred and conceded 201-3 – the second-highest total in the history of the men’s competition – in Sunday’s drubbing against the Superchargers.
Their only win this season was a two-run thriller against the Fire when they needed a stunning knock from number eight Jordan, now struggling with a calf injury, to drag them from 76-8 to 147-8.
The Spirit, with England’s Zak Crawley and Dan Lawrence at the top of the order, have great batting depth – Liam Dawson was carded to come in at number nine on Saturday – and a versatile bowling attack, so they can follow up last season’s nine-run win over the Brave.
Nathan Ellis Top London Spirit Wicket Taker – 11/4
Nathan Ellis and James Vince have played key roles in Hampshire’s success in the T20 Blast over the past couple of years, but they will be on opposite sides in Tuesday’s Hundred clash at Lord’s.
Australia fast bowler Ellis is worth backing to be Spirit’s top wicket-taker against a Brave side who have struggled with the bat under Vince’s captaincy this season.
Ellis was Hampshire’s leading bowler in this season’s Blast, picking up 23 wickets including 4-6 in their quarter-final victory over Worcestershire.
He is usually employed at the death by Spirit skipper Lawrence, when batters have to take risks, enhancing his chances of getting them out, and he dismissed the dangerous Jordan Cox and Tom Curran in last week’s clash with the Invincibles at Lord’s.
Ellis’ clever changes of pace should yield more wickets back at the Home of Cricket on Tuesday and he is a class act at this level, having claimed 15 scalps in just five T20 international appearances for Australia.