Ex-Melbourne Renegades all-rounder Jack Wildermuth insists he has nothing to prove to his former team on Thursday night despite having returned to the Brisbane Heat this season for more game time.
With the Renegades last on the BBL table, the sixth-placed Heat can’t afford to lose at Manuka Oval in their bid to make the top five.
Former Australia T20 representative Wildermuth was adamant his sole focus was on winning rather than proving to the Renegades he was deserving of more opportunities last season.
“I’d love to get the win over them, and I’m chomping at the bit to do that, but I’m not feeling the extra pressure,” said 27-year-old Queenslander Wildermuth, who was released from the final year of his Renegades contract to allow him rejoin the Heat.
“I just wanted a bit more opportunity coming back after a couple of tough years there.
“It was tight for spots there … so I was looking forward to get back to the Heat.”
Despite his desire to return to the Heat, for who he played in the 2016-17 season, Wildermuth said he “learnt so much” in his three campaigns with the Renegades.
“It was a great experience playing with a whole range of players down there, so nothing to prove as far as I’m concerned,” he said.
“We really need to be at our best again because they’ll be wanting to win. They’ll be wanting to come home strong.”
✅ @mornemorkel65 named in our extended squad for the first time in #BBL10!
👉 https://t.co/fgp2Jk8MJH#BringtheHEAT pic.twitter.com/SlBPXokq1I
The Heat’s 18-man squad has been boosted by the inclusion of fit-again South African paceman Morne Morkel, after his bid for reinstatement was approved by the BBL technical committee.
Morkel, who has been back in training for 10 days, had been replaced in Brisbane’s squad while he completed his recovery from ankle surgery.
“Morne’s been giving a few boys a bit of trouble in the nets, as you’d imagine,” Wildermuth said.
“It’s good to have him back. He’s been really good around the group. Even though he hasn\t been playing his experience has been awesome,” Wildermuth said.
“He’s a great guy to have on tour.”
Meanwhile, Queenslander Ben Dunk has been released from the remainder of his Melbourne Stars contract.
He is expected to take up a playing opportunity overseas.
“This was a difficult decision that will allow me to explore other playing opportunities and ultimately was in the best interests for me, my family and the club,” said Dunk, who joined the Stars in 2017.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time playing with the Melbourne Stars and wish them all the best for the remainder of this season and into the future.”
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