Melbourne Stars coach Greg Shipperd remains hopeful that a home semi-final will propel the team into their first KFC T20 Big Bash League decider.
With victory assuring the Stars of a berth in the coveted Champions League, they must first overcome the Hobart Hurricanes at the MCG on Tuesday night.
Having guided Victoria to four Twenty20 titles at the same venue, Shipperd is well aware of what a fortress the ‘G can be and will be buoyed by this morning’s news of the availability of Sri Lankan sling king Lasith Malinga for the do-or-die affair.
“The MCG is the ideal place for us to play cricket,” Shipperd said.
“You’re in familiar territory and you understand the wicket a little bit better than your opposition.
“We definitely feel the support.
“It’s great to see so many kids and families in the crowd and the fans have been great all season.
“They’ve made it a really positive place to come and play and entertain.”
The Stars are also poised to welcome back Cameron White, Luke Wright, Glenn Maxwell, Matthew Wade and James Muirhead from the current KFC T20 International Series between Australia and England, while the Hurricanes will be able to call upon George Bailey and Xavier Doherty.
The BBL semi-final commences at the MCG from 7.45pm on Tuesday night.