There is one match at the Cricket World Cup on Sunday and it could be the first heavyweight tussle of the tournament as the last two winners of the event go head-to-head in a huge clash at The Oval with both sides defending unbeaten records in the competition.
Australia have played two matches thus far and have won both of them while India have only been out once and they were also victorious so we should have a pair of confident sides entertaining us in this contest.
Kev and Steve delivered plenty of winners across the two matches on Saturday and they are back with more for Sunday. Listen to the latest episode to hear them preview this huge match and discuss the best bets for it. Click play below to listen.
I don’t think it has been vintage Australia in this tournament yet by any means but to be fair to them they have turned themselves back into a winning machine and as I always say, you can never criticise a team for winning, even if you can look into how they win. It is now 10 successive ODI victories for Australia so they are on something of a roll at the present time and will be looking to extend that here.
I think Australia have been one of the best sides in the competition with the ball. They have a nice blend. They have an excellent new ball pairing and a first change bowler who can attack the stumps and then they have options who can either defend in the middle overs or push for more wickets. With the bat we saw all of their depth against the West Indies which bodes well for when their top order fire, which inevitably they will do soon.
I’m not really sure what I made of India in their first match of the competition. I thought a couple of special performances bailed them out in the main. I didn’t think many of their batsmen looked fluent and I wasn’t overly convinced by their bowlers, or rather I wonder if their bowling was made to look better than it actually was by some abject batting. We might only truly find the answer out here.
There is no doubt that India have a raft of match winners in their ranks but how many of them are actually in tiptop form I’m not so sure about. They will need to perform as a unit here, as they will know only too well having faced Australia eight times in ODIs already this year. If their top four do fire and their bowling comes to the party they are a formidable force, but there are one or two doubts lingering after Wednesday.
Although they got themselves into a bit of a hole against the West Indies on Thursday, Australia still won the game and I expect them to give those who created the mess the chance to find some form by naming an unchanged side for this match.
There are no obvious reasons for India to change from the side which beat South Africa at the Hampshire Bowl in their opening match. Vijay Shankar was being lined up for a role in the side so Kedar Jadhav could make way although I sense that is unlikely.
I like three bets for this match and I’m pretty much weighed in on Australia. I guess that is no surprise. They were my pre-tournament pick and I just think they match up well to India. These two sides have played eight ODIs this year and are 4-4 for them but Australia have been without Dave Warner, Steve Smith and Mitchell Starc for all of them, all of whom will play in this match. India are largely going in with a similar side to the one Australia beat in their own conditions. India looked a little undercooked to me in that first game, especially with the bat, so I think Australia have the edge here and at 11/10 in what isn’t too far from a 50:50 match I’ll side with the value.
One of the chief reasons why Australia left India with an ODI series win earlier in the year was the form of Pat Cummins and if he is performing against them out there he should be dynamite against them here. Cummins took 14 wickets in the last four matches of that series and he already has five scalps to his name in this tournament so bookmakers are taking a risk offering a performance line of just 35.5 for him here. Cummins has two or more wickets in nine of his last 14 ODIs and that is all we need from him here but given that he has done it against India and that he has two other scoring options I have to be on the over here.
Another reason why Australia have had success over India in recent times has been the form of Usman Khawaja. He had a wonderful series in India but wasn’t too bad back in Australia and he has a run line in this match of 30.5. His eight scores against Australia have been 59, 21, 34, 50, 38, 104, 91 and 100 so only once on those occasions has he not covered this run line. He has been a little flimsy with the bat in this tournament but the pace and bounce at Trent Bridge got him. He won’t have that problem here and I expect him to score accordingly in this one.
Back Australia to beat India for a 4/10 stake at 2.10 with William Hill
Back them here:
WON – Back P.Cummins’ Performance – Over 35.5pts for a 4/10 stake at 2.05 with Betway
WON – Back U.Khawaja – Over 30.5 runs for a 4/10 stake at 1.85 with BetVictor