BBL12 Draft Wrap: Livingstone goes at the top

THE historic, inaugural Big Bash League draft took place on Sunday night, with the biggest international names on the market selected across the eight sides that are gearing up for the upcoming season.

There were some big names on the table from across the globe, as representatives from all eight clubs convened to grab some big signings and fill some holes ahead of the December 13 start date for BBL12.

England’s Liam Livingstone was selected with the first overall pick, with the Melbourne Renegades taking the big hitter who can roll the arm over with his leg spinners. Renegades coach David Saker said the team was pleased with what the 29-year-old brings to the table.

“In the middle (he’s destructive) and he also bowls leg spin, so sort of getting two weapons there – and he’s in some serious form,” Saker said.

Perhaps the best player in the draft in Rashid Khan was retained by the Adelaide Strikers, after the Melbourne Stars’ bid on the damaging leg spinner was quickly matched by the South Australian-based club at pick two.

One of the biggest surprises of the night came in the form of Andre Russell‘s glaring omission from the first round of selections, and eventually, from the draft as a whole. It was a perfect display of how important availability was for clubs last night, with the likes of Russell, Faf Du Plesis and Keiron Pollard only at hand for the first half of the season, before jetting off to rival leagues.

The first round saw some big names selected, with a total of $2.38 million spent in the first eight picks alone, as sides looked to bring in some serious talent in the platinum pick round.

1. Liam Livingstone – Melbourne Renegades

One of England’s best in last year’s T20 tournament, Livingstone was highly targeted ahead of the competition’s maiden draft. He has the ability to find and clear the boundary with ease, and there are not many players in the world hitting the ball as sweetly as Livingstone. The likes of Aaron Finch will benefit from the addition of the heavy-hitter in the batting lineup, and his combination of leg and off-spin is also likely to produce some wickets throughout the season.

2. Rashid Khan – Adelaide Strikers (retained)

It was a foregone conclusion before the draft even started, with no doubt that the Strikers would match any selection for their gun spin bowler. Many thought the Renegades would make the attempt with the first pick, such is the form that Khan has been in over the last couple of years. The Afghan superstar is one of the best spin bowlers in the world, and will don the Strikers uniform once again.

3. Trent Boult – Melbourne Stars

After making a play for Khan, the Stars went for the next best bowler in the draft, with Boult heading to Melbourne for BBL12. He will hit the Big Bash for the first time when the Stars kick off the season against the Sydney Thunder, and expect the New Zealand gun to make an immediate impact. The ball tends to swing on the MCG, which is one of his specialities.

4. Sam Billings – Brisbane Heat

A proven performer at T20 level, Billings will head north for BBL12 with the Thunder opting not to match Brisbane’s selection inside the top four. A reliable contributor with both in front and behind the stumps, he will add some experience for the Heat and should combine well at the crease with the likes of Marnus Labuschagne. Given he has performed for the English at test, one day and T20 level in the last 24 months, Billings will come in ready to go.

5. Chris Jordan – Sydney Sixers

Jordan will add to an already damaging bowling attack which boasts players such as Sean Abbott and Steve O’Keefe. One of the best in the world with the white ball in hand, Jordan clearly impressed throughout his five-game appearance last season, and should make life difficult for any player facing him at the crease.

7. PASS – Perth Scorchers

A surprising move from the competition’s reigning champions, who already have a complete list ahead of the upcoming season. Opting to prioritise their current list balance and availability, the Scorchers appear confident in their prospects for BBL12 at this stage.

8. Shadab Khan – Hobart Hurricanes

The eighth and final selection of the first round saw Ricky Ponting‘s first move in the purple result in the Hurricanes adding a star leg-spinner to their list. One of the best in the world at his craft, Khan has been a gun for Pakistan at domestic and international level, and fills the spinner void that was likely to trouble the ‘Canes if not addressed.


9. Mujeeb Ur Rahman — Melbourne Renegades
10. Joe Clarke — Melbourne Stars
11. Colin Munro — Brisbane Heat
12. Laurie Evans — Perth Scorchers (retained)
13. James Vince — Sydney Sixers
14. Colin de Grandhomme — Adelaide Strikers
15. Alex Hales — Sydney Thunder
16. Asif Ali — Hobart Hurricanes

Total value: $2,080,000


17. Faheem Ashraf — Hobart Hurricanes
18. Rilee Rossouw — Sydney Thunder
19. Phil Salt — Perth Scorchers
20. Adam Hose — Adelaide Strikers
21. Pass — Sydney Sixers
22. Pass — Brisbane Heat
23. Luke Wood — Melbourne Stars
24. Pass — Melbourne Renegades

Total value: $875,000


25. Akeal Hosein — Melbourne Renegades
26. Pass — Melbourne Stars
27. Ross Whiteley — Brisbane Heat
28. Izharulhaq Naveed — Sydney Sixers
29. Pass —Adelaide Strikers
30. Tymal Mills— Perth Scorchers
31. Pass — Sydney Thunder
32. Pass — Hobart Hurricanes

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