Stars depth a luxury as Wright bats without fear

Leading Big Bash League run-scorer Luke Wright says Melbourne Stars' remarkable batting depth has allowed him to bat without fear of dismissal.

The Englishman's 52 on Tuesday night was his third successive top score for the Stars, and fourth for the season. His season record of 262 runs at 37.43 has been made more significant because, of the top 20 run-scorers, only Glenn Maxwell and Alex Hales trump his strike-rate of 155.03.

While the only time Wright has been in sight of a century was in the opening match of the season when he flayed 70 off 32 balls against Melbourne Renegades, he said the Stars' coaches were pleased he had prioritised fast scoring over higher scores.

"When you're at full-strength you know those [elite] guys are behind you. At times at Sussex maybe I'd just rein it back and wait to the end [to hit out] again but here you've got [David] Hussey, [Brad] Hodge, Maxwell, [James] Faulkner. You've got a luxury to be able to push on and keep going [hard] all the way through."

With international selection significantly hampering the Stars in their past two matches, Wright said he was delighted with how replacement batsmen Rob Quiney, Marcus Stoinis and Peter Handscomb had produced valuable cameos in both those victories.

Besides the batting, the Stars also have the three most economical pacemen: Faulkner, Lasith Malinga and John Hastings. With the first two now unavailable due to international duty, Wright praised the impact of Hastings, who in the Stars' seven wins has taken nine wickets at an average of 17.56 while conceding barely more than a run a ball.

"He's been a leader for us . . . really taken it on and taken responsibility," he said. "From my point of view, watching him, it won't be too long before he gets a call-up [for Australia] again. But credit to Australia [that he is yet to], it shows the depth you've got in squads at the minute when people like 'Haysto' aren't around."

The only negative for the Stars on Tuesday night was the shoulder injury of Quiney, after diving for an outfield catch. Scans on his right shoulder are inconclusive.

The story Stars depth a luxury as Wright bats without fear first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.

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