Anderson the key for England success in first Ashes Test

Ashes 1st Test Preview

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Welcome to our Ashes Betting Preview, the long awaited start of the biggest rival in Cricket is here, and our Cricket Correspondent Phil Haigh has cast his ete over the first ashes test at Trent Bridge.
With rugby, tennis and football all out of the way it is time for the sporting focus of the summer to switch entirely to cricket and a series that has been built up for months, the Ashes.
Whenever England meet Australia on the cricket field it is a fantastic spectacle and something that any fan of the sport thoroughly looks forward to but this series has something different about it to any in living memory near enough; England are overwhelming favourites to win it.
Having won the last two test series between the two countries, once at home and once away, the Three Lions have shown themselves to be the far superior team in the last four years, and with various trials and tribulations within the Australian setup in the build-up to this summer’s clash there is little to suggest that the pendulum has swung back the way of the men in baggy green caps.
The battle commences on Wednesday morning at Trent Bridge which has been the scene of many Ashes encounters over the years, most recently in 2005 when England scraped a three wicket win. This was a rare English triumph in Nottingham though, it being only the fourth win over the Aussies at the ground in 20 encounters and the first since 1977.

The prevailing result between the two sides at Trent Bridge has been a draw with nine emerging from the 20 tests between the teams, but if that is to be the case this time around then it should not be due to the weather with the forecast looking splendid for all five days.
As mentioned England are clear favourite for the series and a best price of 10/11 with Paddy Power to win this first test with Australia lagging well behind at 10/3 with Stan James. Despite all the positive feeling towards the English team there will be plenty who see this as a great price on the Aussies. New coach Darren Lehmann is roundly thought to have made a positive impact on the camp, the bowling attack is decent and the questionable batting line-up looked to be finding form in the final warm up game against Worcestershire.
The centuries for Shane Watson and inspirational skipper Michael Clarke in that last match will have worried England and proves that no matter how much the Aussies are struggling they will put up a fight.
Having said this though I expect England to win given the strength of their four pronged attack, especially James Anderson who has been in fine form of late. If there is any swing to be had at Trent Bridge he will utilise it and will sorely test the technique of the Australian batsmen. There has been plenty of talk of the trouble Graeme Swann will give the large number of left-handers in the Aussie side but Anderson remains the main man especially given his superb record in Nottingham. The Lancastrian has taken an incredible 39 wickets in his six test matches at Trent Bridge at an average of under 18 which is a record that should make us sit up and take notice.
Anderson may well be the favourite to be England’s top bowler in the first test, but with that kind of record he still looks fantastic value at 9/4 with Paddy Power.
In terms of batting the value appears to be with the Australian skipper when looking at both teams. The England team have so many potential stars amongst their top five that picking a top performer is tricky whereas the Aussies really only have one man you would back with confidence. Again he is the favourite in the market to be the Australian’s top batsman but at 3/1 with Paddy Power looks a great bet.

Ashes Bookmaker Offers

Bookmaker OfferLink
Bet Victor
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Paddy Power


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Betfred


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Ladbrokes


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    India v England 5th One Dayer Preview

    India vs England

    The series may have already been wrapped up by the home side but there is still one ODI to play and England will be desperate to salvage some pride although it does not look like they will be able to in all honesty.
    The series started so brightly for the tourists, winning the first match with some exhilarating batting but the top order have barely been able to get out of first gear since, save some flashes from Kevin Pietersen and Joe Root in Mohali which were ultimately in another fairly convincing losing cause.
    Whether batting first or second the English batsmen have largely struggled in India and although the bowlers haven’t really been great either it is the lack of runs that have really cost Alistair Cook’s men.
    The conditions for the fifth ODI in Dharmasala will be unique for India if indeed the match goes ahead there given the amount of snow they have had in the area. It is hard to say which team the conditions will suit given that international cricket has never been played there before and although the natural reaction is to think colder conditions will suit the English there is no real evidence to support this.
    India are 4/7 across the board for the win and that is actually quite a generous price for a team that has won the last three matches pretty comfortably. If you happen to have a large pile of money sitting around not doing very much then it may be worth bashing it on the hosts, but if you haven’t got said wad then we will have to find some value elsewhere in the markets.
    Whilst India’s batsmen have been better than their opposition on the whole, their openers have not necessarily been that impressive and England are rightly favourites to score the highest opening partnership. They are still at a best price of 10/11 with Bet Victor for Ian Bell and Alistair Cook to outscore their Indian counterparts and while this is still obviously odds-on it is not a bad bet given Cook’s form especially in the last contest.
    Cook is still the favourite to be England’s top batsman in the last contest of the tour but undoubtedly the form batsman over recent games has been young Joe Root who’s 57 off 45 balls in the last clash was truly scintillating. He is still as long as 6/1 with to be the highest scorer in the English team and of all the bets on offer this probably looks the best value.

      India v England 4th LOI Match Preview 2013

      India vs EnglandAfter such a strong start to the ODI series in India things have tailed off pretty badly for England and two heavy defeats have left them pretty short on confidence and contemplating changes to their team.
      Whilst the bowling has not been at its best over the second and third ODIs it has quite clearly been the batting department that has been letting England down with the tourists not making it past the 160 mark in either match which over 50-overs is a pretty woeful effort.
      It looks like wicket-keeper/batsman Craig Keiswetter is going to be the one to pay the price for the team’s general malaise with his Somerset colleague Jos Buttler looking set to replace him with the gloves and at number six. Keiswetter has certainly not been the only man at fault but he is the least senior of the top order batsmen except Joe Root and the Yorkshireman has been one of the few to show some form with the bat.
      Buttler comes straight in at a best price of 9/1 with Stan James to be England’s top batsman in Mohali whilst Root who was the highest scorer last time out is a fairly tempting 6/1 with . Alistair Cook remains a good bet in this market though at 10/3 with various bookmakers despite making just 17 in each of the last two innings. He will be desperate to regain some respect after two heavy defeats and conditions should suit England a little more in Mohali where he could prosper.
      Despite a marginal improvement in conditions and one alteration to their team, the tourists don’t really look too likely of keeping the series alive with a win. Even if the batsmen begin to fire then the bowlers will have to improve as well with the frontline seamers just not proving effective enough against the Indian batsmen. Jade Dernbach especially has been far too costly and that has caused him to lack the confidence to bowl his numerous variations which are his strong point in the first place.
      One of the few highlights for England though has been the off-spin bowling of James Tredwell who has proved to be a worthy understudy for the rested Graeme Swann. He is favourite to be England’s top bowler but at 5/2 still looks a pretty decent price.
      India are 8/13 to win the contest with England at 6/4 and at that price neither look good value at all. Obviously it would have to be a heavy bet on the Indians to make much profit and whilst England have a chance you would want better odds than that given the last two matches.
      One interesting market that could provide some value is the team to score the most 6s in the match. India are predictably favourites but not by a great deal and can still be backed at odds-against. Bwin offer the best price at 23/17 on the hosts clearing the boundary more than their guests and that looks excellent value given the form of the likes of Yuvraj Singh and MS Dhoni.
      All-in-all it should be a much tighter match than the previous two and it would be a great surprise if England were to fail with the bat quite so spectacularly again. They should at least tip the 200 mark this time around but it still will most likely not be enough to better a resurgent India.

        India v England 2nd LOI Betting Preview 2013

        India-vs-England[1]
        England went into the first match of their ODI series with India as second favourites; that did not stop them recording an impressive nine run win and they will have to upset the odds again as the hosts remain favourites for the second clash.
        A stunning batting display from the tourists followed up by a solid enough performance with the ball saw England claim their first ODI win in India since April 2006 when they triumphed in Jamshedpur.
        The batting for England was good throughout the innings with all six men who picked up a bat contributing meaningfully, but the last two overs are what secured the win for Alistair Cook’s side when Samit Patel and Craig Keiswetter managed 38 runs from the final 12 balls of the innings to make their score what turned out to be an insurmountable one.
        The bowling in the last two overs from India was pretty woeful and that could lead to one change with Shami Ahmed potentially coming in for Ashok Dinda. It is unlikely England will change a winning side although Tim Bresnan’s form will be worrying the selectors as he only managed eight overs that went at a very pricey 8.37 each. Stuart Meaker is the potential replacement but Bresnan will almost certainly get another chance in Kochi.
        England have played once before in Kochi back in 2006 when they lost by four wickets but India do have some bad memories on this ground. They have only played ODI’s in Kochi six times before and whilst they have won four of them, they lost the last one they played their against Australia and also suffered a shock defeat to Zimbabwe in 2002.
        As mentioned the hosts are still favourites despite their initial loss at around 8/11 whilst England can be backed at a best price of 6/5 with Paddy Power. Having performed as they did in Rajkot and with India (especially their bowlers) fairly low on confidence then the tourists look a pretty good price at that with their whole batting line-up looking in good touch.
        Looking at the bowler/batsman markets Ian Bell has shot to the top of the England batting list after his 85 in Rajkot and is now 7/4 joint favourite with Alistair Cook. More value looks to be the man who top scored for India in the first match Yuvraj Singh who looked in very good form on his way to 61 before being caught off the bowling of James Tredwell. Yuvraj is 7/2 across the board to top score for India and he looks good value at that.
        In terms of bowling, none of the Indians had a great day with the ball last Friday but R Ashwin has been their best bowler of late and despite not taking any wickets in Rajkot at 4/1 with William Hill that looks a good price.
        Tredwell was England’s best bowler by some way taking four wickets at 4.40 an over which led to a man of the match award for the Kent spinner. He is a short price at 6/4 to repeat his heroics but at 4/1 Jade Dernbach looks better value given his box of tricks that can flummox batsmen at the end of the innings. A potential outsider in this market could be Joe Root who bowled nine overs in Rajkot and whilst he didn’t take a wicket he kept things tight which could lead India to have a bit of a go at him in Kochi. He is as long as 25/1 with to be England’s top bowler which could turn out to be a great bet.

          India v England 1st ODI 2013 Preview

          Expect a Rajkot run-fest
          Neither India nor England are heading into their five-match ODI series having enjoyed ideal preparation with both sides struggling for form in limited overs cricket and each with bowling attacks severely lacking in experience at the highest level.
          England reached a real peak in confidence after winning the test series against their hosts before Christmas but since then things have changed fairly dramatically. The usual change in personnel between test and 50-over contests has occurred, but what the side is not used to is a change in coach and for the first time since 2009 the side are listening to the instructions of a new man in the shape of Ashley Giles.
          The new limited overs England coach doesn’t look to have made too many radical changes to the side early in his international coaching career but he has not had the greatest start with his team losing both their warm-up matches against India A and Delhi which is a little embarrassing ahead of the main event which starts on Friday morning.
          There were positives to take from the contests, most notably a century for Ian Bell in the second match, but a massive negative was the bowling performance. Both Jimmy Anderson and Graeme Swann are being rested for this series meaning a lot more pressure is on the shoulders of the likes of Steven Finn and Jade Dernbach and they were not at their best in the warm-up bouts. Of all the bowlers against Delhi only part-time off-spinner Joe Root managed an economy of under 5.00 and that is not an encouraging sign going into face what is potentially a potent India batting line-up.
          Finn must step up to the plate, as must Tim Bresnan who is one of the more experienced players in the team now and if James Tredwell is to play, which looks likely, he will have to at least keep things tight if not pick up many wickets.
          The performances of rookie Stuart Meaker and the sometimes unpredictable Jade Dernbach could prove pivotal to England’s chances. If they are at their best then both can do a lot of damage, but at Meaker’s pace if he is wayward he will be very costly and if Dernbach’s slower balls are picked he will be demolished as well.
          Even more pressure will be on India’s attack though with the inexperienced seam pair of Shami Ahmed and Bhuvneshwar Kumar likely to play and at their rather sedate pace the accuracy will need to be there against the likes of Alistair Cook and Kevin Pietersen or they will be in trouble.
          Ravindra Jadeja and R Ashwin are the key to the Indian attack and if they can keep the England batsmen pinned down then the hosts have every chance of prospering. Their performances with the ball compared to those of Tredwell and Samit Patel for England could be the difference.
          In the batting department, India still just about edge it although not all their big names have shown great form of late. The likes of Gambhir, Kohli, Yuvraj and Dhoni all have the capabilities to take the game away from England whilst only really Pietersen and Morgan can do so for the tourists.
          England’s ODI record in India is shocking having won only one of their last 18 matches in the country and their only appearance in Rajkot previously saw them lose by a whopping 158 runs in 2008. The result won’t be as one sided this time but India have to be considered favourites with history firmly on their side.
          Getting some value out of the contest may be tough but a decent looking bet is Ian Bell to be England’s top batsman. He will be opening the innings so will have ample opportunity to accumulate runs and his 108 against Delhi proves he is in fine touch. He will always be behind Alistair Cook and Pietersen in the odds which gives us the tempting price of 7/2 with a number of bookies.
          There have not been a great deal of international matches played at Rajkot but there have been some high scoring ones and with the inexperienced nature of the attacks this could be a bit of a run-fest for both teams. The last match played at this ground saw both India and Sri Lanka score over 400 and whilst that would be a miracle to be repeated we might well get around the 300 mark for each team. This would make a century almost a certainty and at 6/4 with Ladbrokes for there to be a three-figure score in the match there looks to be plenty of value there.

            Champions League T20 Cricket Semi Finals Preview

            The Champions League t20 is nearing its conclusion with only four teams left battling out to lift the trophy at the Wanderers on Sunday, and by the looks of things there won’t be too much for the home crowd to cheer about in Johannesburg.
            The two South African teams that remain, the Highveld Lions and the Nashua Titans have done extremely well to reach this stage given the power of the IPL and Big Bash sides that have failed to make it this far, however, they are both about to face about as stern a test as they ever have in this format of the game.
            The two other sides making up the semi-final line-up are the only two teams not to have lost a game thus far, the Sidney Sixers who face the Titans and the Delhi Daredevils who take on the Lions.
            The Indian side were unlucky with the weather, as the rain cost them two matches, but even though they were the only side to lose two contests to the monsoon season, they still topped their group by two points.
            The Sixers had no such problems with the rain and duly put all four opponents to the sword in scarily convincing fashion to lead their group with the maximum 16 points. Their 185 against the Chennai Super Kings is the second highest total of the competition thus far, but if anything it has been their bowling that has been the highlight of their stunning displays. Mitchell Starc in particular has been the dangerman, as he was for Australia in the World t20. He tops the wicket taking charts with 11 in just four matches at an economy of 6.50 which is very acceptable in this format and with the likes of Pat Cummins, Shane Watson and Moises Henriques backing him up, it is a potent attack.
            In terms of the Daredevils, it is their batting line-up that will have the Lions worried as it is arguably the best in the competition. Being faced with a top five of Jayawardene, Sehwag, Chand, Kevin Pietersen and Ross Taylor is not what most bowlers will look forward to and it is very hard to imagine a team boasting these names not registering a decent score.
            This is not to write off the South Africans; Jacques Rudolph of the Titans is the tournament’s leading run scorer and the Lions have impressed with the ball especially Aaron Phangiso who has claimed eight wickets. It is quite clear though that the two best sides in the competition come from Sydney and Delhi and barring something of a choke from either, it is those two that will contest what should be a sensational final on Sunday.
            Both are odds on to win their contests in the last four, but put them together as a double and Ladbrokes will offer 2.54 on them both to win, which looks a great price.

              Snooker Antwerp Open Betting Preview

              Not one of the tournaments that will grab the attention of many but the Antwerp Open is of great importance and will be fiercely contested until a champion is crowned on Sunday evening in Belgium.
              With a seeding-cut off point fast approaching, gaining ranking points is crucial for a number of players and these along with a 12,000 euro winner’s prize are certainly not to be sniffed at.
              Last year’s tournament at the Lotto Arena in Antwerp proved how highly sought-after this title is with the final seeing Judd Trump edging out Ronnie O’Sullivan 4-3 in the final and six of the final eight competitors coming from the world’s top 16.
              It is again a first to four format throughout which will often throw up some odd results given how few mistakes it takes for you to lose a game that is that short. Especially as the big names come in at the last 128 stage on Friday when their opponents have been getting into a rhythm and used to the venue over the previous two days.
              The tournament kicked off on Wednesday as an obscene number of competitors (mainly local) were whittled down to the 128 men that will rattle through the rest of the competition till the climax on Sunday. The favourite to be the last man standing is Neil Robertson who won the last European Tour event earlier this month in Poland. At 15/2 and clearly in form, the Aussie looks a decent price, but he could be faced with a tough match second up against Jimmy White who is playing some great stuff of late.
              The defending champion and the world number one are just behind Robertson in the odds and both have really decent records on the European Tour as Trump obviously claimed this title last year, and Mark Selby one the first Euro event of the season at the back end of August. Trump could well have an edge here though, he is yet to win a tournament this year and will be absolutely seething about that, especially after his monumental crumble in the final of the Shanghai Masters. He is due a win and one is right around the corner and at 9/1 he looks a good bet.
              There is plenty of quality behind these young guns though, not least with John Higgins who defeated Trump in Shanghai, and the likes of Mark Williams and Ding Junhui can never be written off. But of all the men heading to Antwerp, Trump sees the hungriest, and will desperate to get back on the winning track as we come closer to the UK Championship which he would love to defend.