Southern Brave extinguish Welsh Fire in damp squib Hundred opener

·25-min read
southern brave v welsh fire live score hundred 2022 - Christopher Lee/ECB via Getty Images
southern brave v welsh fire live score hundred 2022 - Christopher Lee/ECB via Getty Images

The fireworks that marked the start of the second season of the Hundred were late. On the field, the fireworks never really arrived: the crushing victory that marked the start of Southern Brave’s title defence at the Ageas Bowl featured just two sixes.

This summer will, the Hundred’s organisers hope, mark the start of the competition’s journey from novelty into being an established part of the fabric of the English cricketing summer. In this context, no matter the resplendence of James Vince’s strokeplay, the opening game of the 2022 season was distantly underwhelming. Both Southern Brave and Welsh Fire were shorn of an overseas player; the unrelenting demands of the schedule also deprived Fire of the most captivating cricketer in England right now, Jonny Bairstow.

The inclusion of women’s cricket in the Commonwealth Games has meant that the first week of the Hundred comprises exclusively men’s cricket, and so lacks doubleheaders. Without these, the whole spectacle felt a little out of kilter; the turnstiles struggled to cope with the rush of fans before the start, and significant numbers of the sell-out crowd did not make it in time for the first ball, despite the brief delay in the opening pyrotechnics. Even the scorers needed a little time to readjust to the world of five-ball sets rather than six-ball names, sometimes confusing the bowlers’ names on the scoreboard.

fireworks go off to open the event during The Hundred match between Southern Brave and Welsh Fire - Ryan Hiscott - ECB/ECB via Getty Images
fireworks go off to open the event during The Hundred match between Southern Brave and Welsh Fire - Ryan Hiscott - ECB/ECB via Getty Images

For the tournament organisers, perhaps the most pleasing part of the evening came not on the pitch but off it. Somewhere in the region of one-quarter of spectators were draped in Southern Brave green, suggesting an audience who aren’t just coming to the Hundred, but coming to see their team win. The hint of growing tribal loyalties – it doubtless helps that Southern Brave were the inaugural champions – is significant in the competition’s evolution, especially given the broader shifting of cricket’s tectonic plates, with short-format domestic leagues looming as an ever-greater part of the sport’s future. From next year, indeed, the Hundred will no longer have to compete against England international cricket in the same way, with a window found to allow multi-format players to play in the bulk of the competition.

The shift – however contentious because of what it means for the red-ball game – will raise the standard of the cricket and inject greater stardust into the competition. That would be welcome, on the evidence of the first night, which included three dropped catches – including a routine chance at deep backward square leg from Ryan Higgins that reprieved Vince on one, instead spilling through his hands for four.

 Fans of Southern Brave cheer during the match between Southern Brave and Welsh Fire at Ageas Bowl -  Ryan HiscottB/ECB via Getty Images)
Fans of Southern Brave cheer during the match between Southern Brave and Welsh Fire at Ageas Bowl - Ryan HiscottB/ECB via Getty Images)

That moment went a long way to ending any hopes that Welsh Fire had of defending their feeble 107 for seven –their innings never recovered from Craig Overton’s probing new ball seam, which accounted for Joe Clarke and Ollie Pope – attempting a reverse scoop – within the Powerplay. While Chris Jordan and Jake Lintott, one of the stars of last year’s title triumph, strangled Fire, the most heartening performance came from Rehan Ahmed. The 17-year-old showed control, a fine googly and pace that wrist spinners like Rashid Khan have shown can be essential for leg spinners in the short formats – approaching 60mph at points – to concede just 14 runs from his 15 deliveries.

But Fire did not help themselves, most obviously in a calamitous mix-up between Ben Duckett and Josh Cobb: Duckett was almost run-out at one end, before Cobb was run-out at the other.

Yet even Fire’s meagre total provided Vince with a platform to showcase his gifts. His 71 not out, peppered with straight drives and precise cuts, and including a slog-swept six off Noor Ahmad, was particularly timely given Jason Roy’s recent travails. While the two are very different players – Roy defined by raw power and ostentatious intent, Vince altogether more genteel – both are adept at scoring quickly in the Powerplay.

Ollie Pope of Welsh Fire is bowled by Craig Overto - Dan Mullan/Getty Images
Ollie Pope of Welsh Fire is bowled by Craig Overto - Dan Mullan/Getty Images

For all the focus on Vince’s Test credentials, he has morphed into an outstanding short-format player, and one whose ease against pace and timing is ideally suited to Australia, where the T20 World Cup will be played in October. Vince has become one of the most coveted overseas players in the Big Bash, and scored a match-winning 95 in the 2021 Big Bash final. As an opening partner for Jos Buttler in T20 internationals, he is an attractive option; should he repeat his trick last year, by leading Southern Brave to another Hundred crown, Vince will find himself increasingly difficult to ignore.

And yet, as he helped Brave waltz to victory with 31 balls remaining, the quality of Vince’s batsmanship felt a little out of sync with standards in the rest of the match. When the game ended with an anticlimactic no-ball from Jake Ball, somehow it felt curiously apt.

Southern Brave vs Welsh Fire as it happened

09:37 PM

Brave win by nine wickets

A crushing victory for the Brave to start their title defence. They may have been helped with their familiarity with the Ageas Bowl's hybrid pitch and certainly by winning the toss but Welsh Fire were hapless with the bat and in the field, seemingly lacking any belief after Ryan Higgins dropped James Vince. Brave were far more fluent with the bat, Fire unable to match the home bowlers mastery of variation.

09:28 PM

Balls 66-69 SB 109/1 (Vince 71 Stoinis 6) chasing 108 

Poor Ryan Higgins runs in to try to take a catch at deep backward square, he can't get there, no one could, but the ball scuttles under his dive and rolls for four.

Ball goes for a booming bouncer, it leaps too high and is called a no-ball so Brave win with a whimper rather than a bang with 31 balls to spare.

Southern Brave win by nine wickets. 

09:24 PM

Balls 61-65: SB 101/1 (Vince 66 Stoinis 5) chasing 108 

Payne comes back and Stoinis takes a single off the bottom of his bat when he tries to pull and the ball clips the cue end. He'll need to chalk it. Vince runs a hard two with a legside flick and then pulls for a single. Higgins fields that one and the crowd is up on their feet to applaud him doing something right, hooting joyously and sarcastically.

09:20 PM

Balls 56-60: SB 96/1 (Vince 63 Stoinis 3) chasing 108 

Another long hop from a leg-spinner, this one from Ahmad, and Vince butchers it with a cut stroke. Higgins makes a hash of his rudimentary stop on the boundary, sliding past it and the ball goes for four. The home crowd laughs at him. After a couple of singles, Vince launches Noor Ahmad into the long pasture at cow corner for six! Twelve to win required off 40.

09:17 PM

Balls 51-55: SB 82/1 (Vince 50 Stoinis 2) chasing 108 

Stoinis takes on his best friend Zampa and pushes him for a single through cover. Vince leans forward to sweep very fine for three. Blimey! Stoinis is quick. Stoinis stands tall to slap the wrong 'un down the ground for a single. One ball left and Vince uses it to bring up his fifty with a brutal cut for four. Fire had next to no chance and have bowled accordingly, without any belief that they could even attempt to defend their woeful total.

09:12 PM

Balls 46-50: SB 72/1 (Vince 42 Stoinis 0) chasing 108 

Davies lumps a drive over mid-off for four, no footwork just brute force but holes out two balls later.

09:09 PM


Davies c Higgins b Ball 26  Doesn't roll his wrists on a pull arrowed towards the longest side and Higgins comes in 10 yards to take it diving forward. FOW 72/1

09:08 PM

Balls 41-45: SB 68/0 (Davies 22 Vince 42) chasing 108

Ryan Higgins comes on to try to atone for his dropped catch. Vince stabs two through point and works one off his pads for a single. Davies flicks two through midwicket, losing his grip but it makes no significant difference.

Welsh Fire's WinViz chances are 3 per cent. It must be drunk.

09:04 PM

Balls 36-40: SB 63/0 (Davies 20 Vince 39) chasing 108

Vince works two through midwicket off Ahmad and is then hit on the foot, outside the line, and he hops a leg-bye. When Davies gives him back the strike, Vince almost holes out to long-on but his lofted drive drops short and they trot a single. Davies ends the over with a cracking drive over cover for four.

09:01 PM

Balls 31-35: SB 52/0 (Davies 15 Vince 36) chasing 108

Vince brings up Brave's fifty with an off drive down to the man on the fence. Davies steps away to stab a single, inside-out, through cover but, after Vince flicks a single into the legside, he is beaten by the googly and wears it on the pad.

08:57 PM

Balls 26-30: SB 49/0 (Davies 14 Vince 34) chasing 108

Noor Ahmad, the left-arm leg-spinner comes on for a set. Vince sits back to slap a cut down to the cover boundary rider and then works a single off his pads. Davies exploits the width to chop a single and Vince drops deep in his crease to drill two through extra-cover.

08:55 PM

Balls 21-25: SB 42/0 (Davies 13 Vince 28) chasing 108

Vince lofts a drive off Jake Ball over mid off for four and holds the pose in his followthrough for a moment and, after exchanging singles with the rather frantic Davies. Vince flirts with Duckett when crashing a cut past cover, though it might have taken one of his fingers off had he thrown his hand out. Instead it flies for four.

James Vince of Southern Brave bats during The Hundred match between Southern Brave Men and Welsh Fire Men at Ageas Bowl  - Dan Mullan/Getty Images
James Vince of Southern Brave bats during The Hundred match between Southern Brave Men and Welsh Fire Men at Ageas Bowl - Dan Mullan/Getty Images

08:50 PM

Balls 16-20: SB 32/0 (Davies 12 Vince 19) chasing 108

An early bowl for the world champion Zampa who begins with a pie, a juicy long hop that Vince scythes for four through point. Vince nudges a couple of singles, Davies comes down for a slog over cow corner but can only drag it for a single.

08:46 PM

Balls 11-15: SB 25/0 (Davies 11 Vince 13) chasing 108

Welsh Fire had 41 dot balls in their innings, Southern Brave four from their 10 so far.

Vince climbs into a Payne short ball and clobbers a pull for four. The captain chips a drive for a single and Davies gleans a first boundary with a slashing cut over point, followed by a glorious straight drive for a second off the next ball.

08:42 PM

Balls 6-10: SB 11/0 (Davies 2 Vince 8) chasing 108

Jake Ball finds the Vince inside edge which saves him from a leg-before appeal and probable dismissal. Vince smears a cover drive for two – one of the boundary riders is expertly placed for Vince's bread and butter stroke, saving two runs.

08:40 PM

Balls 1-5: SB 8/0 (Davies 2 Vince 5) chasing 108

David Payne opens the bowling for Welsh Fire and Alex Davies gets away from the first ball, punching a drive through point for a single. After serving up a wide, Payne makes an excellent dive to try to stop Vince's straight drive, misses it but the ball crashes into the non-striker's pads and denies him a boundary anyway.

Vince whips a single off his pads, Davies slices a drive over cover for another and then, to add insult to injury in a dismal Welsh Fire performance, Higgins drops a sitter at deep backward square off Vince and the ball bursts through his hands for four.

08:28 PM

Welsh Fire 107/7

Rampant performance from the champions in the field, from the seamers and spinners alike. A dropped catch depriving 17-year-old debutant Rehan Ahmed a wicket was the only blemish on a horrid pitch for batting, exploited perfectly by winning the toss and bowling with nagging accuracy and variations of pace.

08:21 PM

Balls 97-100: WF 107/7 (Zampa 10 Ahmad 9)           

Zampa stands tall and slaps a drive over Overton's head for four but limp towards a total with a nurdled single, a two and a scrambled bye that looks about 50 runs short.

08:18 PM

Balls 91-96 WF 99/7 (Zampa 6 Ahmad 6)         

Higgins top edges a pull off Jordan and runs two but can only bunt the next one back to the bowler. He holes out from the next. No batsman has managed to find any fluency.

Noor Ahmad come sin and winds up, swinging and missing at one slanted across him that is called wide and helicoptering over the slower ball bouncer.

But the lad can hit it, clipping the fuller one over square leg for six, the first of the match.

08:14 PM


Higgins c Fuller b Jordan 11  Pulls it straight down deep backward square leg's throat.  FOW 92/7

08:12 PM

Balls 81-90 WF 90/6 (Higgins 9 Zampa 6)         

Rehan Ahmed is rattling through his over but the captain denies him his debut wicket when running back at cover to chase a sliced drive by Zampa. He almost runs past it and can't correct his hands, spilling the chance. They run two.

Ahmed will carry on for the full 10 and although he gives up singles and a couple of twos, Ahmed keeps Southern Brave firmly in control with a pair of dot balls too,

08:09 PM

Balls 76-80: WF 80/6 (Higgins 5 Zampa 1)         

Sterling work from Jordan to remove Duckett and to strangle the attempt to accelerate. They're into the bowlers now, too.

08:05 PM


Duckett c Vince b Jordan 40  Tried to step on the gas but again the ball didn't come on as he anticipated and he carted a slog sweep off the top edge high to mid-on.  FOW 79/6

08:05 PM

Balls 71-75: WF 78/5 (Duckett 40 Higgins 4)       

Three play and misses from Duckett and Higgins and only two singles off Fuller's naggingly accurate five.

Brave will struggle to fit in their 100 balls by 8.11 so it's likely they will have to bring one of their five fielders outside the ring up.

08:02 PM

Balls 61-70: WF 76/5 (Duckett 39 Higgins 3)       

Higgins flicks a single through square leg, Duckett square drives for one and Lintott's googly is called wide.

Lintott is staying on for  the full 10. Duckett gets out his turbo broom and sweeps fine for four then square for another. He has as many sweeps as AB de Villiers, unveiling a third with a thumping one through midwicket. The three sweeps ended up at the fine leg boundary, the square leg boundary and cow corner, from 11 o'clock to five for the left-hander.

Ben Duckett - Adam Davy/PA Wire.
Ben Duckett - Adam Davy/PA Wire.

07:56 PM

Balls 56-60: WF 58/5 (Duckett 24 Higgins 1)     

Brave have bowled magnificently and Fire have simply been unable to find a method of scoring heavily because their timing is all off. Two singles and a wide are the only additions to the score before Fuller completes his second set and the Brave take their time out.

07:51 PM


Cobb run out 5  One for 'That is so village'. Cobb set off for a tight single, stopped and went back and had to go again when Duckett kept coming. Duckett made his ground at the striker's, beating the throw but the keeper hurled it down to Fuller at the non-striker's  who diverted it on to the stumps to remove the bails before his hand touched the stumps.  FOW 55/5

07:50 PM

Balls 51-55: WF 55/4 (Duckett 23 Cobb 5)     

Duckett top edges a slog sweep and Vince, running backwards from cover, trims his finger nails leaping to try to take the catch. Two inches taller and he would have snaffled that. They run a single but can't take a boundary off the over. There have only been five all match. A couple of singles, a wide and a two slapped to long-on are the only punishment.

07:47 PM

Balls 46-50: WF 49/4 (Duckett 19 Cobb 4)     

Rehan Ahmed comes on to bowl and starts impressively with grip on this sweaty pitch and some rip, hurrying Duckett into jamming his bat down and chopping a single down to third man. A single a ball from the over. Chris Jordan is miked up and says they have to ward against complacency but they're in a great position on 'a fresh pitch'.

07:44 PM

Balls 41-45: WF 44/4 (Duckett 16 Cobb 2)   

Lintott starts with one that paints the tramlines outside Hain's off stump from over the wicket. Looks like he thought it would have been called wide but it was just legit and Lintott follows it up by dismissing him next ball.

Cobb punches a low full toss down the ground for a single, Duckett cuts for a single and Cobb slaps another through mid-off.

07:40 PM


Hain c Davies b Lintott 9  Gloved it while trying to reverse sweep the left-arm wrist-spinner. FOW 41/4

07:39 PM

Balls 36-40: WF 41/3 (Duckett 15 Hain 9)   

Marcus Stoinis, 'the Hulk', comes on to bowl and he keeps them quiet with his first four deliveries which only go for singles. The left-handed Duckett ends the over by walking across to the offside and reverse scooping for four, like flipping a pancake.

07:36 PM

Balls 31-35 WF 33/3 (Duckett 9 Hain 7) 

Chris Jordan takes the ball and serves up a wide. Duckett tries to cut with the broomhandle out but even he can't reach it. Other than that aberration, Jordan is as miserly as ever , conceding only two to a square leg whip and one to a daft run, Duckett taking on Vince's throw from point. Hain, finally back on strike, pushes the last through mid-on for one.

Ollie Pope of Welsh Fire is bowled by Craig Overton of Southern Braveduring The Hundred match between Southern Brave Men and Welsh Fire Men  - Dan Mullan/Getty Images
Ollie Pope of Welsh Fire is bowled by Craig Overton of Southern Braveduring The Hundred match between Southern Brave Men and Welsh Fire Men - Dan Mullan/Getty Images

07:32 PM

Balls 26-30 WF 28/3 (Duckett 6 Hain 6) 

Duckett finds a fortuitous four when a flick intended for midwicket instead takes the leading edge and flies through point for four. Fuller puts his hands on his hips. Duckett and Hain exchange singles behind square on the legside and Duckett gleans another with a cleaner strike through point.

07:28 PM

Balls 21-25 WF 21/3 (Duckett 0 Hain 5)

Welsh Fire have struggled with their timing all evening but Sam Hain finds the middle straightaway with a lovely leg-glance for four. Don't think Pope touched the yorker, he just missed it and it knocked back off stump. Hain takes on the lightning Chris Jordan at mid-on but makes his ground before Jordan's diving throw.

That's the end of the powerplay.

07:25 PM


Pope b Overton 10  Tries a Root reverse ramp/sweep and plays the yorker on to his stumps. FOW 16/3

07:24 PM

Balls 16-20 WF 16/2 (Pope 10 Duckett 0)

Banton races down and plays an exquisite on-drive for four but is out next ball as Hogan reverts to back of a length and he holes out off a top edge.

07:22 PM


Banton c Whiteley b Hogan 6  Top-edged a pull and Whitely made 25 yards to come in from deep backwards square to take a good catch. FOW 16/2

07:20 PM

Balls 11-15 WF 11/1 (Pope 9 Banton 2)

Banton comes down the pitch to Overton and taps through mid-off for a single. Pope gives his drive everything but the kitchen sink but connects with pure air in the woolliest of wafts and  gets away with a squirty drive through point for two followed by a drive on the walk for two. They can't pierce the infield often and when they do, they keep finding the only two men out.

Overton is up to 88mph.

07:15 PM

Balls 6-10: WF 6/1 (Pope 5 Banton 1)

Michael Hogan, the 41-year-old Glamorgan wildcard, takes the second set of five. Pope plays tip and run through point. Banton defends a couple then plays and misses. Good, heavy length and tight line. He barely breaches 80mph but is naggingly accurate. The last ball errs too short and Banton pulls it but for merely a single.

They change ends for the first time now.

07:12 PM

Balls 1-5: WF 4/1 (Pope 4 Banton 0)

Overton starts back of a length, bit of nip-back and keeps Clarke scoreless for the first three deliveries, inside-edging on into his pads, wearing the next on the thigh pad and defends the third. Overton serves up an outswinger for the fourth and Clarke walks across and chips it tamely to cover. In comes Pope and creams the last ball of the five through cover for four.

07:10 PM


Clarke c Stoinis b Overton 0 Spoons a catch to short extra cover. FOW 0/1

07:07 PM

Craig Overton has the ball

Southern Brave won all four of their home matches last year on the quickest pitch in the competition.

07:06 PM

After a short delay for the smoke to clear

The players take to the field. It's 22C in Southampton this evening and muggy.

07:02 PM

The BBC has eschewed any build-up

And goes straight to the middle with the openers about to stride to the crease. Isa Guha presents as the flame throwers erupt, alongside Moeen Ali and Jimmy Anderson.

Fireworks - Sky Sports
Fireworks - Sky Sports

06:52 PM

Your teams

Southern Brave  James Vince (capt), Alex Davies (wk), Marcus Stoinis, Tim David, Ross Whiteley, James Fuller, Chris Jordan, Craig Overton, Jake Lintott, Rehan Ahmed, Michael Hogan.

Welsh Fire  Joe Clarke, Tom Banton (wk), Ben Duckett, Sam Hain, Ollie Pope, Josh Cobb (capt), Ryan Higgins, Adam Zampa, Jake Ball, David Payne, Noor Ahmed.

06:44 PM

Rehan Ahmed

The 17-year-old Leicestershire leg-spinner will make his Hundred debut for Southern Brave, as will the rather more experienced Marcus Stoinis.

06:41 PM

Southern Brave have won the toss

And have put Welsh Fire in to bat. Chasing was the route to victory in last year's competition and Brave are sticking to precedent.

06:34 PM

Sky begins its coverage

With presenter Kass Naidoo and her 'dream team' of Ebony Rainford-Brent, Nasser Hussain, Ravi Shastri, who did some Stranger Things 4 stuff with a cased clock and its pendulum, Stuart Broad and Kevin Pietersen.

05:43 PM

Michael Vaughan on his love for The Hundred

The second season of The Hundred starts this evening  and it's going to be big for the likes of Jason Roy. This is an opportunity for him to go and show everyone how good he is. He's had a run of poor performances for England but he's an outstanding player and I'd be amazed if he doesn't find form. Likewise Liam Livingstone hasn't really fired and Jos Buttler needs a score or two.

Anyone who has a good Hundred could find themselves selected for the seven-match T20 tour of Pakistan and then, potentially, the T20 World Cup in October and November. Certainly if Phil Salt starts smacking it to all parts and gets a couple of hundreds I think England would consider changing their white-ball team.

I'm led to believe that most Hundred games are sold out. You're hoping for good weather, drama and a few last-ball finishes to create a bit of social-media presence. It'll need to go some to match all the tight games and victories from losing positions during this year's T20 Blast though. Personally I'm looking forward to the competition. It always creates debate. People don't seem to accept that the format has arrived and is going to be here for a long long time.

Just enjoy it: it's bat and ball over 22 yards.

05:27 PM

Good evening

And welcome to coverage of the opening match of the second season of the Hundred, a men's match between last year's inaugural champions Southern Brave, based at the Ageas Bowl, and Tan Cymreig/Welsh Fire from Cardiff. For all the tickets sold in 2021, the vibrancy of the play and coverage, the road to the Lord's final was not the road to Damascus for its numerous critics. Virtually none of the hostility that the Hundred provoked among those clothing themselves in the flag of tradition when the England and Wales Cricket Board's first foray into franchise competition was announced was distilled by its first season but some opinions have changed. This author began as a sceptic, went to three games on his own dime and took family members who had never been to a match before, and came back impressed by the occasion if not a zealot for the format.

Southern Brave - Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley
Southern Brave - Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley

But then it's not the format that counts particularly for me but the competitiveness of the game, excellence of the play and a desire for cricket to convert a public that has been denied free-to-air TV access to the game for 17 myopic years to its charms. We have to find a way to address cricket's absence from the shared, national experience and the desert that state school sport has become for the game and in that pursuit I am making a point, like Sir Arnold Bax advised, to try every experience once, except incest and folk-dancing.

Having just said that the format doesn't count, it is so unusual at least superficially, that I should run through the basics:

  • Each side have 100 balls to face and deliver with each innings supposed to take no longer than 65 minutes.

  • Ten balls will be bowled from each end, and the umpire will signal after the first set of five to allow the captain to decide whether the bowler shall persevere and bowl a full 10 or change to another bowler. Each bowler will be allowed a maximum of 20 deliveries in the match.

  • If a batter is caught out, the new batter will face the next ball regardless of whether their predecessor had crossed with the non-striker.

  • The powerplay lasts for 25 balls and during that time only two fielders are allowed to be placed outside the 30 yard circle and each bowling side is allowed one 90-second time-out during which the coach is allowed on to the field to discuss tactics with their players.

  • Contrary to pre-tournament rumours, lbw has not been abolished nor will wides be punished with free hits.

  • If a team is not in a position to bowl their final five balls of the innings within 65 minutes, one fewer f­ielder will be permitted outside the f­ielding restriction area.

  • No drinks breaks are permitted.

  • Each team will be allowed a maximum of one unsuccessful DRS review per innings

In the two teams for the opening match, look out for the champion Braves' big-hitters from last year, James Vince, Quinton de Kock and Alex Davies plus their stellar bowling line-up including Jake Lintott's hen's teeth English left-arm wrist-spin and stalwarts George Garton and Chris Jordan.

Welsh Fire do not have their captain Jonny Bairstow available after all as he has withdrawn to take a breather after 12 international white-ball games and four Tests so far this summer but they do have their best batsman from last year, Ben Duckett, who was second only to the phenomenal Liam Livingstone in the plundering of runs, and the big-hitters Tom Banton, Joe Clarke and David Miller. Australia's leggie Adam Zampa will come up against his mate Marcus Stoinis and Naseem Shah, who has a bowling action as close to Dennis Lillee's as anyone I have seen in 40 years, to provide the pace like (Welsh) fire.