Sydney Thunder captain Shane Watson's praise for two unorthodox bats

Sydney Thunder captain Shane Watson was a big hit with the fans at the inaugural Border Bash.
Sydney Thunder captain Shane Watson was a big hit with the fans at the inaugural Border Bash.

Sydney Thunder captain Shane Watson says two of the world’s most unique batsmen will feature in Tuesday night’s BBL pre-season game.

Thunder will boast English international Jos Buttler, while Melbourne Stars’ Test candidate Glenn Maxwell will play at the Lavington Sportsground for the second successive year.

“It’s no surprise to me to see Glenn get spurred on by not getting picked in the Ashes squad and dominating like he has,” Watson said.

“When he’s on, like he is, you can’t bowl to him and you can’t set a field, he just hits wherever he wants.

“He’s that skilled, he just hits the ball wherever fielders aren’t.

“There’s only a few batsmen in the world who are able to do that.

“AB de Villiers is certainly one of those, I’d say Jos Buttler is one of those as well, Glenn Maxwell is one of the select few around the world that are able to do that.”

Maxwell posted the highest Sheffield Shield score by a Victorian in a decade when he compiled a superb 278 against NSW late last month.

Buttler has played 57 T20 internationals, cracking 46 sixes in a strike rate of 138.71.

The Thunder also boast one of the forgotten men of Australian cricket in Callum Ferguson.

The South Australian played his one and only Test against South Africa in November last year.

“He’s still got his best cricket in front of him,” Watson said.

“The times that he played for Australia in one-day cricket, he did incredibly well.

“He reads the game incredibly well and knows when to take the risks when he needs to and he’s got all the shots to be able to do what he wants.”

The Thunder and Stars have generally travelled different paths in the six years of the BBL.

The Stars have been a perennial finalist, but the high-profile side has paid a price at the end of the competition with star players forced out due to representative commitments.

The Sydneysiders, meantime, have finished last four times, including last season, but they did win the tournament two years ago.

A family fun day with the teams will be held at Wodonga’s Kelly Park on Monday afternoon.

About 1000 tickets have been sold for the match.

Meanwhile, Cricket Australia says soft drink and alcohol cans won’t be permitted into the ground.