With the IPL done and dusted for another year, cricket’s attention reverts back to the international scene for the ICC Champions Trophy. The top eight world teams in the 50 over format of the game compete in a relative quick-fire tournament (by cricket’s standards!) consisting of 15 matches played over 18 days in England and Wales. Read on for the best in ICC Champions Trophy betting...
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Yes that’s not a typo! 12/1 for the world’s best batsman to top score in a 50 over tournament. In fact Kohli is 7/1 favourite with most bookmakers which is more realistic, but Unibet have gone in at 12s. Big move. I’d say this tip is definitely worth opening an account for if you don’t already have one. While ‘Chiku’, as he’s known, didn’t excel in this year’s IPL, his quality is undeniable as he’s shown on countless occasions. He won’t have any problem adapting to the English pitches and he’ll absolutely flog the Pakistanis and Sri Lankan bowlers all over the place. Get on it!
The Proteas are actually my dark horses to win the whole competition but that being said they do have a history of choking in somewhat catastrophic fashion in semi-finals of big tournaments. Who remembers Allan Donald dropping his bat while being run out in what looked like a comedy sketch back in their World Cup clash with Australia 1999? I’m sure he’ll never ever forget! But they have three outstanding batsman in Hashim Amla, AB de Villiers and Quinton de Kock, alongside arguable the best spinner in the world right now Imran Tahir and the viciously fast Kagiso Rabada. They should top Group B with little difficulty.
Captain Eoin Morgan has been talking his side’s chances up and the three game mini-series against South Africa which starts on Thursday will give us a real idea of how prepared they are. Clearly they have the quality to win every game in Group A, but it’s when the pressure is really on that they tend to fold. Ben Stokes must still have nightmares about being smashed for those four consecutives sixes by Carlos raithwaite in the World T20 final! Back the home team to win their three group games but I’m not confident of them lifting the trophy.
It has been a rapid rise to the top for Uttar Pradesh’s Bhuvneshwar Kumar. After doing exceptionally well on the domestic circuit, the medium pacer got his chance to perform at the international level. He took the most wickets of any bowler in IPL10 with 26 in the 14 games he took part in. He was been the go-to man for Sunrisers Hyderabad bowling at the start of the innings and has been mighty impressive at the death as well. India will hope he’s just as effective in England, and I see no reason why he won’t be.
They might be in the middle of a disruptive pay dispute with Cricket Australia, but Australian cricketers seem to relish adversity. They will probably love the fact that the ICC Champions Trophy is taking place in England too, as the abuse they’ll get will just make them all the more determined to win. Australia have a great record in the tournament, winning it in 2006 and 2009 and their new ‘fearsome foursome’ bowling attack looks like it could seriously terrorise some batting line-ups. I fancy them to go all the way at 7/2.
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