From a neutral point of view I’ve got to say that I am not great a fan of a 2 match test series like the one we have here. Two of the top sides in the world should be playing a minimum of 3 tests, but such is the busy schedule these days, I’m afraid 2 it is.
From a biased English point of view, I would much rather be seeing Australia playing a gruelling 4 or 5 match series, but never mind.
I find it hard to see Australia taking 20 wickets in either of these two test matches unless someone manages to conjure up an unlikely bowlers paradise from somewhere, something which I can’t really see happening.
That means that I don’t see Australia winning the series, but can they draw it though?
I think that they have a good chance as the batting looks to be the strongest part of both teams and the chances are that the pitches are going to favour the batsmen as well, which would suggest that a drawn series looks the most likely outcome.
The only problem is that odds of 7/4 with William Hill on a drawn series dosen’t represent much value in my view. All it takes is one batting collapse, even one bad session in a test series this short and the series can be lost.
Moving onto the 1st test in Mohali and there is nothing to seperate the teams in the betting for this one either. The draw is again the favourite at 11/10 with Stan James, while both sides can be backed at 5/2 for the win.
Early indications are that the wicket has a bit of grass on it, but I would imagine it will flatten out early on day 1. With this in mind I would urge caution in backing the draw, but to be fair I wouldn’t back a draw at that price anyway. As I wrote earlier, you only need one bad session to lose a test match.
For me this looks too close to call, the draw looks the obvious call but you never know, so I am certainly not planning on having a bet on the outcome of this one at the moment.
I hope I am wrong and that we are not just going to witness two sets of batsmen dominating the series on flat lifeless pitches, these two teams are capable of producing good exciting cricket, but only if they are given the chance to do so.
We also could well be watching Ricky Ponting and Sachin Tendulkar playing their final test series against each other here. I think it is fair to say that they will both want to go out on a high so lets enjoy watching two of the best batsmen of our generation go head to head in what hopefully will be an enjoyable competitive series.
After the recent farcical events we have witnessed in England, the game of cricket could do with a welcome boost. These two giants of the game could be just the men to provide it.