Rare chance for Kohli bet

Last chance Maxwell

With India two-up and Australia severely depleted, the T20 series has a rather half-hearted feel about it now. Attention seems to already be turning to the Test series that follows.

Indeed, some India players who could have been given a run in the dead rubber have been playing in a tour match against Australia A. Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins are all away resting up ahead of the Test series. So short are Australia of players that they will probably have to go with the same XI that was convincingly beaten in game two.

Aaron Finch, the Australia, captain seems unlikely to be risked with a glute problem, particularly as his replacement, Matthew Wade, smashed a 50, and with the start of the Big Bash just three days away.

Finch is listed on the Sportsbook top bat markets so immediately we have a value alert. He is 23/10 favourite with Steve Smith 11/4 second jolly. Wade and Short, the probable openers, are 3/1 and 16/5 respectively. It is unusual for two openers to be so big so, if you subscribe to the view that those who get the opportunity for most crease time and a guaranteed powerplay to bat in are shrewd bets - and we do - then go ahead.

But we also note the price of Marcus Stoinis at 12/1. Could Stoinis be promoted to open in place of Short? Stoinis has made his name in the Big Bash by opening and being destructive. Australia’s balance was all over the shop for the second match and this is one change which could be beneficial.

In terms of wrong prices on win rates, it won’t be a huge surprise that we have to keep faith with Glenn Maxwell. He has a 28% win rate but is rated at 4/1 (20%). He is overdue, too. And to say we’re getting impatient is an understatement. This will be the sixth time we’ve been on without a winner.

Likewise we bet Manish Pandey for top India bat. We don’t expect Pandey to play (money back if he doesn’t) but the 14/1 is hopelessly wrong on win rate.

Another market of interest is Sportsbook’s top match runscorer. We have delved into the database to find out the career wins for the key batters involved.

Top match batsman wins/matches
Kohli 17/84
Finch 10/65
Maxwell 7/66
Dhawan 9/63
Rahul 9/44

KL Rahul, the India opener, is value with a 20% win rate. That means he should be closer to 4/1 than Sportsbook’s 5/1. But the firm are giving us two points on Virat Kohli, who is a 4/1 chance on the data and 6/1 is available. It is rare to get such a huge edge on such a talented player and it would be remiss not to take advantage. Maxwell is 17/2 but it’s a smidgen out for us to play, while Shikhar Dhawan is around 1.4 percentage points the wrong way at 11/2.

Australia last two years top bat wins/matches
Maxwell 8/28
Finch 6 1t/31
Smith 5/44

India - top bat wins/matches
Rohit 10 1t/38
Kohli 7/29
Dhawan 7 1t/34
KL Rahul 8/27
Pandey 5/28

Top bowler wins/matches
Bumrah 2 4t/26
Chahal 6 6t/31
Hardik 2 t/22

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