CricViz have teamed up with Sage to provide some tips and tricks into how to nail your team selection.
The cleverest fantasy players know that the key to success is not to focus on picking the ‘best’ players, but on finding those who will score you points – and for the cheapest price. The Hundred Fantasy Game rewards exactly that sort of analytical thinking, and in trying to dissect the points scoring, the best picks come to the fore.
Sometimes though, the obvious signings are the best. Birmingham Phoenix star Liam Livingstone ended the inaugural season of the men’s Hundred as the leading run scorer, and comfortably the leading six-hitter. The Lancastrian will be among the most selected players on show in the tournament, but you can’t afford to leave him out. Runs, sixes, and wickets – even at top dollar, Livingstone is the MVP.
Faf du Plessis is a great option as a guy who churns out consistent runs, having dominated the last two seasons of the Indian Premier League in this regard. At the top of the order, he’ll have plenty of chances to get stuck in, and with half of his matches at the high scoring Headingley ground, he’s well placed to make big runs. Faf will also captain the Northern Superchargers, giving you that valuable captaincy bonus to take his value from good, to great. For those looking for cheaper options, fellow South African Rilee Rossouw has been tearing it up in the Blast, with the best season ever in the competition according to CricViz metrics.
Another highly valuable player at the top of the order is Trent Rockets’ Alex Hales. Much like du Plessis, the Englishman is playing on a high-scoring venue and will open the batting, but he also offers one very specific skill – he gets to 30 a lot. In the last three years, Hales scores 30+ in just under half of his innings, and with the 5 point bonus awarded for reaching this landmark, Hales’ reliability in this area is a huge advantage. Expect plenty to get him in their team, but for good reason.
When it comes to the bowling, the big guns are still your main names. Beyond the wicket-taking charts, canny fantasy players will be eyeing up the Bowled/LBW bonus, and for that you can look no further than Manchester Originals Wanindu Hasaranga. The Sri Lankan leg spinner bowls with a low arm, targets the stumps and looks to trap batters on the crease. In the last three years, Hasaranga has taken 50 wickets either LBW or bowled – only two men in the world (Rashid Khan and Shaheen Shah Afridi) have taken more. There’s a chance that his availability may tail off with involvement in the Asia Cup, but regardless, the wristy is a lovely option.
Bowling a maiden is a big deal in The Hundred Fantasy game, with a 12 point bonus. Last season, there were only 14 maidens across the entire competition, and only one man – George Garton – managed to deliver two maidens. The Southern Brave all-rounder has been struggling with Long Covid in other domestic cricket in England, but claims that he has recovered – his excellent record may tempt the more aggressive fantasy players to take a punt.
Catches might not be the sexiest part of the game, but they’re a key way of scoring points in The Hundred Fantasy Game. Unsurprisingly, wicket keepers are the way to go with this, given the increased opportunities they have to take catches. Quinton de Kock took 11 catches last season, comfortably the most of any player in the men’s tournament, and barring a missed opening game, he’ll be present for the whole competition. Add that to his run tally, and the South African is a great buy.