Cricket Betting – India odds slashed after 1st Test win

After India’s 8 wicket victory of Australia in the 1st Test, the bookmakers have slashed the odds for an Indian series win in to 1/4 (more information about bookmakers in general can be found in this Sportsbook review).

The bookmakers also – unsurprisingly – have India as the firm favourites to win the 2nd Test, at a general price of between 5/6 and Even money.

It all started off so well for Australia, and from a neutral point of view I was enjoying what seemed to be a competitive Test match, that was until MS Dhoni got going.

I certainly didn’t see that innings coming from the Indian skipper, to be honest I didn’t think he had it in him given all the pressure and blame that was heaped on him after the England test series.

In fairness to Australia I don’t think they could have too many complaints about their 1st innings total. Ok, maybe they should have got to over 400, but 380 was a respectable total that they must have been happy with. It certainly had them well in the game.

They were also well in the game when India were 196/4, 372/7 and even at 406/8, it was only then that the match went away from them.

Moving on to the 2nd Test and looking at things from an Aussie point of view, I’m really not sure which way the wind is blowing.

One one hand I don’t think they should be too disheartened. They were just beaten by a great innings from Dhoni, and they won’t come up against that sort of innings every Test match. And England got thrashed in the 1st Test and look what happened after that.

On the other hand though, Australia had to rely yet again on a century from Michael Clarke, how long can he keep on carrying the batting? He has been brilliant over the last 12-18 months, but he needs some support (like Alastair Cook for England, their outstanding form won’t go on forever).

And where is that support going to come from? Mike Hussey has retired, Watson is good for a 40, is Phil Hughes going to cut it in India, (probably not in my view), and I can also see David Warner struggling out there.

Overall Australia didn’t do quite as badly as the result suggests, but I still feel they have a lot of questions to answer over the next few weeks.

From a cricket betting perspective, I think I will be waiting and watching how things go before I get involved. I know that is being a bit over cautious, but I don’t really see an obvious value bet at the moment.

Easy Start for Michael Clarke

As baptisms go, Michael Clarke’s first tour as full time captain of Australia couldn’t have gone much better.

The biggest problem with playing Bangladesh, or a side of similar standing is the prospect of making a mess of things against a side that you are expected to beat convincingly.

Thankfully for Clarke and Australia, that didn’t happen. Although for us poms, it would have been a good laugh had they done so.

I didn’t see the games, but I followed them by reading the reports and catching some of the highlights. The results clearly went well and I believe that the Aussies aren’t currently in that bad a place in ODI’s.

One thing that stood out too me straight away is that Clarke hasn’t tried to implement many changes. He has stuck with the bulk of the players and to the formula used by Australia over recent years.

I got the impression that he kept things simple, there was no sign of any ‘I’m the boss now’ message for Ricky Ponting, and he would appear to still be the main man that the batting is built around.

I think it would have been pointless for Clarke to start upsetting people like Ponting at this stage, the fact that he hasn’t tried to impose his authority in a heavy handed needless way shows good common sense and temperament to me.

There is probably plenty of cricketers who would have tried to publicly demote Ponting in some way just to show who is really in charge, Clarke appears to have been sensible and avoided going down that road.

The Aussie batting is looking strong again and they are in good nick with wicketkeepers also. To take two on tour, with a view to using one or both as batsmen shows how blessed they currently are with Brad Haddin and Tim Paine.

In the bowling department thay still have the experience of Brett Lee and Mitchell Johnson and now big John Hastings seems to be establishing himself as the allrounder.

Steven Smith is also continuing with his development, I wonder if the long term plan for Smith is for him to be the spin option. Xavier Doherty got another chance and failed to make any major impact, that would probably be the main area of immeadiate concern to Clarke and the Aussie selectors.

Australia can’t keep chopping and changing in this department, if they don’t see Smith as the front line spinner then they surely have to stick with Doherty and give him a run in the side and a proper chance to prove himself.

But overall I think that the Aussie ODI team is in a decent place. Yes Lee, Hussey and Ponting will need replacing soon, but they have probably got a year or two left in them yet and that gives Australia valuable time to gradually blood their long term replacements.

England V Australia – 4th Test, 3rd Day Betting Preview

Australia are on the verge of levelling the series today at Headingley after another meek surender from England’s batsmen during the final hour of the 2nd day’s play. In little more than 7 overs England managed to go from 58/0 to 82/5 with another inept performance from the much vaunted – so called best players in the country according to Geoff Miller – batting line up.

The bowlers didn’t fair much better in the morning either. Anderson looked like he was back to the bad old days of four ball after four ball, Onions was surprisingley left out of the attack until just after 12.30 in the first session after which the damage had been done, questioning Strauss’ captaincy ability again.

Swann looked menacing during the onslaught at times but by now the Aussie batsmen where so far on top they were just taking him on at any opportunity – only Stuart Broad managed any respectability taking 6-91, probably doing enough to again hold onto his place with his last throw of the dice when he should already have been dropped.

Harmison was again short and wide, although this time it is widely acknowledged he was probably bowling to a plan working on the theory that Michael Clarke was struggling with the short ball due to his stomach injury.

Struggle Michael Clarke didn’t as he extended his lead at the top of the Ashes run scoring stats with another majestic innings this time getting out on 93 when yet another century was there for for the taking.

Marcus North again looked assured and solid at No.6 scoring his 2nd century of the series before he holed out in the pursuit of lower order runs while batting with the tail for 110, taking the Aussies to a formiddable total of 445 – a small lead of 343.

Then came the feeble response, Strauss was out to Hilfenhaus who at last got his lbw – dosen’t Strauss ever learn either. Then Bopara summed up his series with a 1st baller, he may have been unlucky with an inside edge but he looked stuck in his crease and was let down by his technique.

Bell surendered to Mitchell Johnson again and Collingwood looked totally out of his depth against the revitalised bowler who worked him over with ease, Cook completed the embarrassment hanging his bat out playing yet another English nothing shot gifting Mitchell Johnson his 3rd wicket while playing him into top form for The Oval test match.

Not much point putting odds up except to say rain(draw) can be backed at 100/1 with Blue Square and 888Sport – you would still be mad to back that!