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Thursday, 13 October 2011

India vs England ODI Series

After a hugely successful summer for English cricket, which saw them crowned Number One Test side in the world, they embark on a tough winter schedule, beginning this Friday with the first of five One Day International against India in Hyderabad. England put India to the sword in the recent series in both Test & ODI's but India at home with their fanatical fans are a very different proposition.

India are the current World Champions at the 50-over format & have a formidable home record with only the Australians in 2009 & 2007 defeating them in their last 13 home ODI series. England’s last two tours have seen an aggregate score of 11-1 in favour of India with the 2008/09 series ending 5-0, with two matches abandoned saving them from further embarrassment. These days England are a stronger unit & made of sterner stuff with a number of exciting emerging talents thrown into the mix although with their weakened bowling attack (see further on), including lack of decent spin options excluding the magnificent Graeme Swann, we feel India have the edge in what should be an competitive & close series at the best price of 8/11.

There are a huge range of other markets aside from the outright series win & we have found a few standout betting opportunities in the top Indian batsman & top English bowler markets.

(Virat Kohli can help edge India to victory in their own backyard)

The top four in the betting for top Indian batsman are Gautam Gambhir, Virat Kohli, Ajinkya Rahane & Suresh Raina. Both Gambhir & Raina are hugely talented batmen but struggled against England all summer, not seeming to have any answers against the English bowlers, but should do better under these different conditions, however we feel they still aren't viable betting options. Rahane has an average of 31.60 with one 50 in his five International ODI caps & is still finding his feet in international cricket. So the pick has to be Kohli who is still available at a best price of 4/1 despite being shorter at a number of firms. He hit 107 in the last ODI in Cardiff & has continued his fine form in the Champions League playing for the Royal Challengers Bangalore with scores of 70 & 84 not out in the semi final.

The England attack is weakened due to the injured Stuart Board & rested James Anderson missing. They have a number of inexperienced bowlers at this level in Steven Finn, Chris Woakes, Scott Borthwick & Stuart Meaker (11 caps between them) fighting it out to support the established three of Graeme Swann, Tim Bresnan & Jade Dernbach. Swann is undoubtedly the best spinner in the world currently but the Indians are fantastic players of spin & he is too short at around 2/1 whilst Bresnan will keep things tight economically but won't take a huge amount of wickets on the batsmen friendly pitches. Our selection is Jade Dernbach who has made himself a vital part of the England attack in the last year with his excellent array of slower balls. These variations will be used in the power plays & end of the innings, increasing his chances of a number of cheap wickets whilst the batsmen are looking to take advantage of the fielding restrictions.

It should be a fascinating hard fought series with India taking the honours by the odd victory to gain some revenge for their humbling defeat this English summer.

India to beat England in the ODI Series at 8/11 (Victor Chandler)
India to win the series 3-2 at 2/1 (General)
Virat Kohli to be top Indian batsman at 4/1 (Stan James/Skybet/Boylesports)
Jade Dernbach to be top England bowler at 4/1 (Ladbrokes)

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