Pattinson can be our game changer: Vettori ​ | Brisbane Heat - BBL
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Pattinson can be our game changer: Vettori ​

12 December 2018

Brisbane Heat coach Dan Vettori is hopeful a fit and firing James Pattinson will be club’s game-changer in BBL|08 after seeing the new-recruit put in several good performances in the Sheffield Shield across the last month.

Pattinson, who landed in Brisbane on Tuesday afternoon for his first season in teal, made a return to the bowling crease in October having missed the entire 2017-18 season with a back injury. 

His return to elite cricket included a century for Victoria in the Futures League and four injury-free Shield games. 


Vettori believes Pattinson’s searing pace and much-improved batting has him inline to assert himself as a world-class all-rounder and one of the Big Bash League’s x-factor players.

“The reason we got him here is because we think he can be a game-changer,” said Vettori after landing in Brisbane ahead of the Heat’s first game next week. 

“He’s starting to really mature as an all-rounder, and that’s where we think we can get the most benefit from him - as a strike bowler and looking to bat him at seven or eight. 

“When cricketers get a lot of injuries like he has, they look to develop other aspects of their game. Patto has always been a good batsman, but he has really come on with that. 

“We hope his bowling and his body stays as it’s always been, because it’s a pretty special package. But when you add his batting to that he can be a world-class all-rounder,” he continued. 

WATCH: Dan Vettori Press Conference

For Pattinson, while he humbly admits his batting has improved, he sees his value to the Heat as very much a frontline fast bowler.  

My strength is my pace, so in this format I am looking to get batsmen out with pace. You also can’t be predictable in T20 cricket. You need to think one step ahead of the batsman, so I will be looking at my change-ups as well. 

“I’ve been working on my batting a fair bit over the last couple of years while I’ve been injured. Foremost is my bowling though, but I’ll to contribute to the team anyway I can – whether that’s with the bat, ball or in the field,” he tells us after landing in Brisbane ahead of the Heat’s training camp on the Gold Coast this week. 

WATCH: James Pattinson Press Conference

While Pattinson’s signature appears to be the missing fast-bowling piece of the puzzle for many Heat fans, Vettori is expecting another newcomer - Afghanistan spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman, to play a significant role.

Despite being the youngest member of the Heat squad at just 17-years-of-age, Vettori says Mujeeb’s experience in playing T20 cricket around the globe has him ready to take on the challenge of the BBL. 

“Since he’s arrived on the international scene, he’s performed wherever he’s gone. He’s played in most competitions around the world and he’s been highly successful,” Vettori said. 

“He’s got so much experience in such a short period of time, that he really understands his game. That’s true of a lot of the Afghani players, they feel they are self-coached; therefore, they know what they are doing in any situation. 

“From what I have seen of him, he rarely gets flustered and pressure’s not an issue, and that’s the mentality you need at the Gabba.”

The Heat’s BBL|08 preparations will kick into overdrive this week when they play an intra-squad practice match at Metricon Stadium on the Gold Coast before turning out in this weekend’s Queensland Premier Cricket T20 round.