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News

Bancroft joins Warner at Thunder, Hatzoglou to Hurricanes

Bancroft and Hatzoglou both depart two-time reigning champions Perth Scorchers

Alex Malcolm
Alex Malcolm
27-Jun-2023
Cameron Bancroft drives the ball square  •  Getty Images

Cameron Bancroft drives the ball square  •  Getty Images

Cameron Bancroft has made a bold move in the BBL leaving two-time reigning champions Perth Scorchers to join former Australia Test opening partner David Warner at Sydney Thunder on a three-year deal.
Scorchers have also lost legspinner Peter Hatzoglou who has signed with Hobart Hurricanes despite being a key part of the Scorchers squad in their back-to-back titles.
Bancroft was a vital cog in the Scorchers' title last year having begun the season running the drinks after being dropped from the side during their successful 2021-22 campaign.
He played the last 11 games of the season and made 357 runs at 51.00, striking at 140, including four half-centuries. He made a career-best 95 not out in the final game of the home and away season before scoring 53 not out in the Qualifier against Sydney Sixers to help Scorchers bank a home final which they won against Brisbane Heat.
But despite one of his best-ever BBL seasons, and being third all-time on Scorchers' career runscorers list, the depth of top-order batting at Scorchers saw Bancroft look elsewhere for more long-term contract security. He was courted by a number of clubs but has landed at Thunder where he looks set to play alongside Warner again despite the pair's strained relationship dating back to the Sandpaper incident in Cape Town in 2018 when the pair were Test opening partners. They have since opened the batting together for Australia in the 2019 Ashes but the Sandpaper incident and long-term fallout still casts a shadow over the pair.
Meanwhile, Hatzoglou has also left Scorchers to join Hurricanes for the upcoming BBL season. Hatzoglou joined Scorchers ahead of the 2021-22 season after crossing from Melbourne Renegades. He was a key part of Scorchers' 2021-22 title where they played almost entirely on the east coast of Australia during the Covid-19-affected season. Scorchers played two spinners for most of that season and Hatzoglou formed a formidable partnership with Ashton Agar in the middle overs, including taking 1 for 13 from three overs in the 2021-22 final against Sydney Sixers. But he played just 10 matches last season and was not in the XI for the winning final as Perth opted for a four-pronged pace attack and a spinning allrounder in Cooper Connolly at No.7 on their fast, bouncy home track at Perth Stadium.
Hurricanes look set to use Hatzoglou alongside unusual left-arm orthodox spinner Paddy Dooley who had a breakout season last year.
"I'm really excited for my next chapter in the BBL with the Hurricanes," Hatzoglou said.
"I'm one of those players whose career has followed a more non-traditional path to get to the point I'm at now, so I'm just really thankful for every opportunity that comes my way.
"Watching from afar over the past couple of seasons, it is obvious that the Hurricanes have pretty much all the right ingredients within their program already. I'm looking forward to coming in, getting to know some of the guys and the staff a bit better, and contributing whatever small part I can to hopefully the ultimate on-field success."
Hatzoglou has been playing in the T20 Blast in England for Glamorgan recently after being drafted in as an overseas replacement for Australia quick Michael Neser.
Out of contract West Australian left-arm swing bowler Joel Paris is set to leave Hurricanes and is set to sign with Melbourne Stars. Paris played just 12 matches in two seasons with Hobart after previously playing 25 games with Perth Scorchers.
He is likely to be reunited with former WA and Scorchers teammate Nathan Coulter-Nile who is set to sign a one-year contract extension with Stars for BBL 13 after his previous four-year deal expired at the end of last season.
Sydney Thunder BBL 13 squad: Cameron Bancroft, Ollie Davies, Matt Gilkes, Chris Green, Nathan McAndrew, Blake Nikitaras, Alex Ross, Daniel Sams, Gurinder Sandhu, Jason Sangha, Tanveer Sangha, David Warner
Hobart Hurricanes BBL 13 squad: Tim David, Paddy Dooley, Nathan Ellis, Caleb Jewell, Ben McDermott, Riley Meredith, Mitch Owen, Billy Stanlake, Matthew Wade

Alex Malcolm is an Associate Editor at ESPNcricinfo