The Cricket World Cup heads back to Taunton on Wednesday where the tournament will look to beat the rain at long last as Australia take on Pakistan in what is always a famous match up and a great watch between two proud nations.
Both teams have a loss on their ledger for the tournament and so each of them will be eager not to add a second defeat to their resume. That should make what is always a competitive clash even feistier.
Despite being frustrated by the recent weather, Kev and Steve are determined to keep churning out winning bets and they have come up with three for the Australia vs Pakistan match. Click play on the video below for their latest podcast.
It was a good start to the tournament for Australia with successive wins against Afghanistan and the West Indies but things went a little pear shaped against India. In the end their run chase in that match was made to look a little silly but I could see what they were doing, they were just 10 or so runs or a couple of overs outside of getting into a winning position but a loss of too many wickets cost them dearly.
The other thing which denied them a decent shot at turning over the Indians was their death bowling. Usually it is an area where they are so reliable but they were loose and expensive and so they will be eager to tighten up for this match. If they are able to do that then you would think they will give themselves every chance here given the form their batsmen have shown in the three games to date.
We’ve already seen the two sides to Pakistan in this tournament. We’ve seen the brilliant, enigmatic side in their win over England and we’ve seen the useless one which lost to West Indies. It has been more than a week since they last played so they will need to have ensured they have done plenty of work leading up to this match but with the videos going around with them training children they certainly haven’t been locked up in the hotel which is a good thing.
Pakistan will need to bowl well here. That would have been the case on this ground anyway but with the power Australia have with the bat it is imperative that they are at their best in that department. If they are then assuming they bat well, and they won’t find any demons in what many describe as the best batting track in the country, then they are entitled to take a fair bit of beating.
Australia look likely to be forced into a change for this match with Marcus Stionis out injured. They have two options. One would be to bring Shaun Marsh in and the other would be to lengthen their bowling by bringing Kane Richardson in.
Pakistan might look to bring an extra seamer into their ranks as this is not a ground for spinners in white ball cricket. Shaheen Afridi would be the obvious choice should that happen but alternatively it wouldn’t be a complete surprise if they are unchanged.
I was hoping that we would have a clear spell in the lead up to this match so that we could get stuck into bets for this one but while the weather is set fair we shouldn’t ignore the amount of rain there has been recently so with that in mind I’ll err on the side of caution and take just two bets for this match.
The first of those is the wides where we can get a rather juicy 14.5 line which looks on the low side to me. Both these sides open the batting with a left and right hand batting partnership and both have left and right arm bowlers taking the new ball so you’ve got to think that the radar will be wonky from time to time here. I would imagine both sides will utilise the short ball whenever possible here too with the dimensions of this ground dictating that pitching the ball up is asking for trouble and if all the rain that has been around is still lingering on the outfield the bowlers could be bowling with a wet ball at times. This all makes me think we’ll go beyond the 14.5 wides here.
Glenn Maxwell tends to enjoy himself against Pakistan. He has batted against them 15 times in ODI cricket and he has passed 50 on seven occasions, including the last three matches of the ODI series between the two teams in the UAE earlier in the year. He has double figures in every match against Pakistan so he always gets a start against them and on a ground which is nowhere near big enough to contain him I think the 8/1 on him to top score for Australia looks big. He looked in fine form when he came in at The Oval on Sunday but the equation needed went against him. With a more stable equation here I fancy he can go a long way to top scoring.
WON – Back Over 14.5 wides for a 4/10 stake at 1.85 with 888sport
Back G.Maxwell Top Australia Batsman for a 1/10 stake at 9.00 with Coral