End of the road: Maybe Lee should think about finally calling it quits, judging by some of the fast bowler's displays in this season's Big Bash
With the 2013/14 Big Bash League now just over two weeks old, the Twenty20 (T20) competition is beginning to take shape as we approach the second half of the group phase.
Already the tournament has witnessed a number of underwhelming displays from a plethora of out-of-form stars. Who are the top five flops in the Big Bash League so far, though?
All data and statistics have been taken from ESPNCricinfo.
Despite his side currently leading the way in this season’s Big Bash League with the only remaining 100 percent record left in the tournament, the experienced Sri Lankan fast bowler has been largely off the pace.
Malinga, who missed the Stars’ opening encounter but featured in the next three wins, has captured just one wicket so far in the entire competition—and even that only came right at the end of their most recent victory against the Melbourne Renegades on Jan 4.
After 10 largely unproductive overs that have yielded 69 runs, the 30-year-old really needs to find some of those bone-crunching yorkers—and fast—if he is to remain in the Stars lineup going forward.
The diminutive one-time Australia international may not be renowned for his big hitting, but he has been known to smack it around the park on his day, which makes his overall contributions with the bat so far in the tournament that much more disappointing.
In his four knocks to date, the 25-year-old has managed to score just 36 runs from 46 balls at an average of only 12, which is hardly what one would expect from him.
As a result, it's no real surprise that the left-hander has been omitted from Australia’s limited-overs squad, which takes on England later this month.
One of the major reasons for the surprisingly poor form of the Heat in the competition to date—they currently lie second from bottom, having lost three of their four—is the repeated failure of their experienced opener.
Brisbane rely heavily on the big-hitting former Australia T20 international to give their innings a major impetus at the top of the order. However, the 29-year-old has just not been able to achieve that so far with only 44 runs to his name from a total of 56 balls at a paltry average of 11 before Wednesday's game.
The veteran may be able to strike fear into broadcaster Piers Morgan, but when it comes to bowling at his fellow professionals, it appears as though the former Australian paceman has now finally run his course.
Lee, 37, has so far returned overall figures of three wickets for 125 from his combined 16 overs at 7.8 runs per over. He has recorded two ducks.
While his general lack of penetration at the top of the order has not unduly affected his side—the Sixers are currently second in the standings—you feel there cannot be much more left in Lee’s tank based on this evidence.
It’s not been a great competition so far for the ex-England international. With that being said, anyone who has followed the batsman’s career over the years will know the 35-year-old has a tendency to blow hot and cold, sometimes even in the same over.
However, the disappointing thing from Shah’s point of view is that he has always appeared more comfortable in the shorter forms of the game. Therefore, an aggregate to date of just 38 runs from his three innings is not what he or Hobart would have been hoping for going into the tournament.