The 6th IPL starts on Wednesday and it promises to be yet another cricket betting bonanza with 76 matches to be played.
There is one new team this year with the arrival of the Sunrisers Hyderabad – who were admitted to the competition to replace the kicked out Deccan Chargers, a lot of the squad are the same players. They take their place alongside the other eight established sides, Chennai Super Kings, Kolkata Knight Riders, Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Delhi Daredevils, Pune Warriors, Kings XI Punjab and Rajasthan Royals.
The Kolkata Knight Riders are the defending champions, winning their first ever IPL last year under the guidance of Gautam Gambhir. This year the Indian opening bat retains the captaincy and he has an impressive array of stars to choose from including Brendon McCullum, Jacques Kallis and Sunil Narine. In the IPL betting, they are 5/1, second favourites to defend their title.
Narine was second top wicket taker last season, I expect him to be in the mix to be one of the top bowlers again this season. He can currently be backed to be the Purple Cap (top wicket taker) winner at odds of 7/1 to 10/1.
The favourites in the outright IPL betting this year are Chennai Super Kings. They are captained by the best limited overs cricketer in the world (in my opinion), MS Dhoni. They are also coached by Stephen Fleming, widely regarded to be one of the best man managers in world cricket. This gives them a phenomenal leadership. A further glance through the team and I see the name of Michael Hussey, another top cricketer and all round good bloke to have in the dressing room. Chennai are another team who know how to get the job finished, they won the IPL in both 2010 and 2011.
The team who originally excited me the most was Delhi Daredevils. The problem is they have lost the services of both Kevin Pietersen and Jesse Ryder over the past couple of weeks, two brilliant limited overs batsmen. Their batting line up also boasts David Warner, Virender Sehwag and Mahela Jayawardene as well, imagine how exciting that batting line up could have been. The Daredevils are now out to 6/1 on the back of those two withdrawals.
The other main runners in the betting are the Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore. The Mumbai Indians are 11/2 and are led by Ricky Ponting. No shortage of experience in this side, Mumbai can call on the services of Dwayne Smith, Harbhajan Singh, Keiron Pollard, Lasith Malinga, Mitchell Johnson and the small matter of Sachin Tendulkar.
What a line up of talent that looks on paper. Mumbai’s best performance was in 2010, when they were runners up. They have certainly pulled together a potential title winning squad, and they have spared no expense either with the addition of Glenn Maxwell, the most expensive player in this years auction, coming in at a whopping 1 Million USD. Mumbai are 11/2 for their first ever IPL title.
The Royal Challengers Bangalore are the other side seen by the online bookmakers as having a serious chance of winning the title. They also have never won an IPL, their best efforts were getting to the final in 2009 and 2011. The bookmakers also make Bangalore an 11/2 chance. They are led by Virat Kohli and have the jewel in the IPL crown, Chris Gayle.
Off the other four teams, the online bookmakers have them as outsiders. So the best place to start in this round up is with the Rajasthan Royals.
Rajasthan were regarded as outsiders in the first ever IPL in 2008, and promptly won it under the leadership of Shane Warne. Despite playing in the Big Bash a few months back, there is no IPL return for Warne this year (he retired from IPL a couple of years back), he can now be found residing in Madam Tussauds. Rajasthan are again outsiders at best odds of 20/1.
Pune Warriors can be backed at 10/1. They have just lost Michael Clarke though (replaced by Aaron Finch), with his bad back (yes, we all know by now what he was carrying when he did it, haha).
Kings XI Punjab are another of the outsiders. In the outright winner IPL betting, they can be backed at 16/1. They are led by Adam Gilchrist, it’s great to see Gilchrist still playing, he is a true great and I really hope he has a good tournament.
And finally there is Sunrisers Hyderabad. They are led by Kumar Sangakkara. Hyderabad look to have more strength in the bowling department with Dale Steyn and Ishant Sharma (how did I ever get those two in the same sentence, sorry Dale) in the side. The Sunrisers can be backed at 16/1.
IPL Betting – Outright Winner
Chennai Super Kings – 4/1
Kolkata Knight Riders – 5/1
Mumbai Indians – 11/2
Royal Challengers Bangalore – 11/2
Delhi Daredevils – 6/1
Pune Warriors – 10/1
Kings XI Punjab – 16/1
Sunrisers Hyderabad – 16/1
Rajasthan Royals – 20/1
Onto the bowling and last year’s Purple Cap (top wicket taker) winner was Morne Morkel. He is currently the fifth favourite in that market to retain his crown. The favourite to be top wicket taker is Lasith Malinga (11/2), followed by Sunil Narine (8/1), Ravichandran Ashwin (12/1), Dale Steyn (14/1) and Morkel at 16/1.
According to the online bookmakers the Orange Cap (top run scorer) is a foregone conclusion. Chris Gayle is the overwhelming favourite at 7/2. Gayle hit a remarkable 59 sixes and 46 fours on his way to 733 runs last year. In 2011 he hit 44 sixes and 57 fours. His closest rivals in the betting are Virat Kohli at 18/1 and Gautam Gambhir at 20/1. You can pretty much name your price for most others.