BBL|13 Opener Preview-Brisbane Heat vs Melbourne Stars

Get ready for the big KFC BBL|13 opening game at the Gabba where the Heat will play against the Stars. This guide has all the info you need.

Image Showing BBL|13 Opener Preview: Brisbane Heat vs Melbourne Stars

Match facts

Who: Brisbane Heat vs Melbourne Stars

What: Game 1 of BBL|13

Where: The Gabba, Brisbane

When: Thursday, December 7. Coin toss at 5.30 pm local (6.30 pm AEDT), first ball at 6.15 pm local (7.15 pm AEDT)

How to watch: Channel Seven, Fox Cricket, Kayo Sports

Get tickets: Buy your tickets here

Live scores: Follow the match on the Match Centre

Referees for the match: Paul Wilson (main referee), Gerard Abood (assistant referee), Shawn Craig (third official), Steve Dionysius (fourth official), Kepler Wessels (match referee).

Match squads

The Heat team for the game includes- Usman Khawaja (captain), Xavier Bartlett, Sam Billings (from England), Max Bryant, Lachlan Hearne, Spencer Johnson, Matthew Kuhnemann, Marnus Labuschagne, Colin Munro (from New Zealand), Michael Neser, Mitch Swepson, Paul Walter (from England), Jack Wildermuth, and Jack Wood.

The Stars team for the match includes- Glenn Maxwell (captain), Joe Burns, Hilton Cartwright, Brody Couch, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Liam Dawson (from England), Sam Harper, Jono Merlo, Usama Mir (from Pakistan), Joel Paris, Corey Rocchiccioli, Tom Rogers, Marcus Stoinis, and Olly Stone (from England).

Form guide

Heat- LWWWL (most recent first)

The Heat almost caused a big surprise in the Big Bash League but lost to the Scorchers in a thrilling final at Optus Stadium. Before that, they won four out of their last five regular season games to make it to the finals. In the playoffs, they beat the second-placed Sixers, third-placed Renegades, and fourth-placed Thunder in three consecutive matches. They have a consistent team this season and are aiming to do even better in BBL|13.


The Stars had a tough time in BBL|12, struggling to find their form and missing the finals for the third year in a row with only three wins. This season, they’re getting a big boost with the return of World Cup winners Glenn Maxwell and Marcus Stoinis. Maxwell couldn’t play in BBL|12 due to a fractured leg, and Stoinis had a hamstring injury, causing him to miss five matches.

Players to watch

Sam Harper played exceptionally well in the last Marsh Sheffield Shield match before the BBL|13 break, scoring 151 runs off 104 balls. Now, he’s all set to make an impact in his first game with the Stars after being traded from the Renegades during the off-season. Harper is eager to show his skills and contribute to the team.

The fast bowler Spencer Johnson, known for his left-arm deliveries, got a chance to play for the international team after a standout season with the Heat last summer. He made his One Day International (ODI) debut in India in September and played his first Twenty20 International (T20I) in South Africa in August.

The BBL|13 opener will feature some exciting Australian international players. Stars like World Cup heroes Glenn Maxwell and Marcus Stoinis, along with Marnus Labuschagne, will be playing for the Stars. On the other side, Test opener Usman Khawaja will be representing the Heat. It’s a lineup filled with well-known and talented Aussie cricketers.


Overall- Heat 11, Stars 7

At the Gabba- Heat 5, Stars 3

Most runs- Chris Lynn (409), Marcus Stoinis (378), Glenn Maxwell (248), Ben Cutting (212), Hilton Cartwright (206)

Most wickets- Mitchell Swepson (16), Adam Zampa (16), Mark Steketee (13), Josh Lalor (8), Nathan Coulter-Nile (8)

Rapid stats

Brisbane Heat won their last two games against the Melbourne Stars. If they win again, it will be the first time in a while – since they won five times in a row between December 2014 and January 2018.

Stars lost their last four games in a row. They haven’t had such a long losing streak since they lost eight games in a row between 2017 and 2018.

During BBL|12, the Brisbane Heat scored 160 runs per inning, which was the highest among all teams. On average, they scored 11 runs more per inning than the Melbourne Stars, who scored 149 runs.

In the last BBL season, the Sydney Sixers had the best catch success rate at 87 percent. However, both the Melbourne Stars and Brisbane Heat had high success rates, with 86 percent and 85 percent, respectively. Interestingly, the Stars had the fewest dropped catches among all teams, totaling only 11.

In the 2022-23 BBL season, Josh Brown from the Brisbane Heat smashed 12 sixes during the Powerplay overs, making him the player with the most sixes in that phase. His teammate Colin Munro came in second with 10 sixes. What’s impressive is that Brown hit 60 percent of his total 20 sixes in the tournament during the Powerplay.

What’s on the line?

In the upcoming 10-game season, it’s important to start strong if you aim to be competitive in the crucial phase of the season. The Brisbane Heat wants to build on their momentum from the end of BBL|12, where they came close to winning the title. On the other hand, the Melbourne Stars are looking to boost their confidence early after a forgettable season last summer.