Thursday, January 26, 2023

Sydney Thunder: Ross returns to bolster Thunder bats

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Middle-order batter Alex Ross has inked a new two-year deal with Sydney Thunder ahead of BBL|12

Veteran middle-order batter Alex Ross has inked a new two-year deal with Sydney Thunder, taking his tenure at the KFC BBL club into a fourth and fifth season.

Ross has played 34 matches for the Thunder over the last three seasons after previously spending two years at the Adelaide Strikers and three seasons with the Brisbane Heat.

The crafty batter, who is currently playing club cricket in England for Reigate in the Surrey Premier League, had a stellar year in BBL|11, albeit an interrupted one.

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He began the tournament in style, scoring the first of three half centuries for the season with a match-winning knock of 61 not out against the Heat at Manuka Oval in Canberra.

He then scored 77 not out – his best ever BBL innings – against the Melbourne Stars and was one of the form players of the tournament before catching Covid alongside teammates Sam Whiteman, Tanveer Sangha and Alex Hales on New Year’s Eve.

That period away from the game and in quarantine put him on the back foot for the latter half of the season but now he is fired up and ready to kick BBL|12 off in similar style to his blistering start last summer.

The 30-year-old believes the Thunder are building towards something special under Head Coach Trevor Bayliss.

“I re-signed because I love playing at the Thunder,” Ross said.

“I love the team we have built and the teammates I play with. We are building something really nice. That started with (former coach) Shane Bond. We know how we all play, and we are now pretty keen to go and win something.

“You see the successful teams like the Scorchers and Sixers, they have very consistent squads built over time and I feel like that’s where we are headed.”

Ross said the Thunder’s roster of emerging young talent is exciting and hopes he can play a stabilising role in the middle of the batting order.

“The young talent we have – they’re all superstars,” he said.

“Jason Sangha had an incredible year last season after missing almost two years prior. To see him come in and be so fearless was awesome.

“Ollie Davies is a star. We’ve all seen those glimpses of what he can do. Matt Gilkes is the same. He played some really important innings’ for us last year in some big moments and he looked so relaxed.

“I’ll just try and bring some experience to the group. In the middle order I need to be adaptable, try and steer us to a competitive total if we are setting or chase hard if we are batting second.”

Ross’ signing comes less that a week after mega star David Warner signed a two-season deal at the club.

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Sydney Thunder BBL|12 Squad

Head Coach: Trevor Bayliss

Contracted Players: Ollie Davies, Brendan Doggett, Matthew Gilkes, Chris Green, Baxter Holt, Nathan McAndrew, Alex Ross, Daniel Sams, Jason Sangha, Tanveer Sangha, David Warner

Sydney Thunder BBL|12 Home Fixtures

Tue 13 Dec | Sydney Thunder v Melbourne Stars | Manuka Oval | 7:15pm

Fri 16 Dec | Sydney Thunder v Adelaide Strikers | Sydney Showground Stadium | 8:15pm

Tue 27 Dec | Sydney Thunder v Brisbane Heat | Sydney Showground Stadium | 7:15pm

Sat 31 Dec | Sydney Thunder v Hobart Hurricanes | Lavington Sports Ground | 3:30pm

Sun 8 Jan | Sydney Thunder v Sydney Sixers | Sydney Showground Stadium | 7:15pm

Fri 13 Jan | Sydney Thunder v Perth Scorchers | Sydney Showground Stadium | 6:30pm

Thu 19 Jan | Sydney Thunder v Melbourne Renegades | Manuka Oval | 7:15pm

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