Brathwaite sparks Thunder in BBL: Watson

Jan 17, 2017 - 5:16 AM Sydney Thunder captain Shane Watson has credited recent additions Carlos Braithwaite and James Vince as the catalyst for the team's late bid for the Big Bash League finals.

The Thunder hope to extend their winning streak to four games on Wednesday night when they host Adelaide in what is expected to be another sellout crowd in their final regular-season match.

Sitting outside the top four on percentages, the Thunder must secure a substantial victory and then need results from the other remaining matches to go their way to jag a finals spot.

"We've got no idea at the moment, (but) I'm sure probably a couple of key people have worked through the calculations," Watson said on Tuesday.

"But in the end, the most-important thing is to be able to continue to set up the games like we have, hope that it again gets us on the right side of the result and by the margin that we need."

West Indian international Brathwaite has been a key contributor since arriving as an injury replacement for Andre Russell, taking an 5-52 combined in his two matches.

England international Vince had also weighed in with scores of 44 and 28, however Watson had particular praise for Brathwaite's efforts on and off the field.

"A lot of times, the West Indian guys in general are fairly quiet, (but) Carlos is just a little bit more extroverted, compared to the majority of the other West Indian guys that I've ever played with.

"Carlos has provided with that injection of energy, but also James Vince and what he's been able to do at the top of the order has been exactly what we needed at the top of the order."

The Thunder kept themselves in the frame for the finals with an eight-wicket rout of cross-town rivals the Sydney Sixers last week following a heated lead-up to the derby.

Watson, who showed great delight in seeing off Sixers batsman Daniel Hughes, believed fans appreciated the growing hostility between the two Sydney franchises.

"The crowd loved it and we love it. We love playing against the Sixers," he said.

"For us to be able to win and put on a dominant display like we did as well makes a lot of people very happy because we are the little brother compared to the Sixers.

"They've obviously got everything from one of the best cricket grounds in the world, to all the other trimmings that go with playing at the SCG. And also how they are in general. It's nice to be able to get one up on your bigger brother."

Source: AAP

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