Perth Scorchers skipper Simon Katich could open the batting against the Brisbane Heat on Sunday after West Indies star Dwayne Smith was ruled out.
The Perth Scorchers have been left with a gaping hole at the top of the order after star import Dwayne Smith failed to make his scheduled flight to Australia due to personal reasons.
Smith has been ruled out of the Scorchers’ season opener against Brisbane Heat on Sunday, and there’s no guarantee the West Indian will feature at all in this summer’s Big Bash.
The 30-year-old only told the Scorchers about his situation on Tuesday, leaving it too late for the Perth-based franchise to find a replacement import.
With the explosive Smith unavailable for selection against the Heat at the Gabba, skipper Simon Katich is a strong chance to open the batting with Shaun Marsh.
The Scorchers were dealt another blow earlier this week when it was confirmed star paceman Pat Cummins would miss the entire BBL as he recovers from a back injury.
But in some better news, all-rounder Mitch Marsh is ready to fire after more than a year out of the side.
Marsh missed all of last summer’s BBL plus the team’s recent Champions League campaign in India due to a hamstring injury, but has been in solid form for Western Australia in the Sheffield Shield.
Langer admits the Scorchers were outsmarted by then-Heat coach Darren Lehmann in last year’s BBL grand final.
But he said revenge wasn’t on their mind.
“What happened last year is totally irrelevant to me,” Langer said.
“We’ve seen in the Ashes that one of Darren Lehmann’s great strengths is that he’s a great strategist and has a good cricket brain and he probably outwitted us a bit last year in the final.
“We identified that, we respect that, and we’ll make sure we’re one step ahead of them on Sunday night.”
Langer has named four spinners in his 13-man squad, with veterans Brad Hogg and Michael Beer joining rising stars Ashton Agar and Ashton Turner.