South Africa vs Australia – 1st ODI Tips and Betting Preview

After an incredibly one-sided T20 series, South Africa and Australia turn their attention to the 50 over format of the game on Wednesday when they begin a much more important five-match ODI series in Bloemfontein.

The T20s were just the starter for this the main course and it is an important series because both teams are just over four weeks away from beginning their World Cup campaign and this is the start of the last bit of preparation for the tournament.

South Africa

There is no doubt that South Africa would have wanted to be more competitive in the T20 matches than they ended up being but their focus was very much on these ODI games, as you would expect given the proximity of them to the World Cup which gets underway in India next month. They have brought all of their big guns back for this series and while conditions in India will be different to the ones they will play in here, you sense that building confidence and morale over the next couple of weeks will be key.

South Africa were taken apart when they had the ball in hand in the T20 matches. It was a second string bowling unit which they had out in those matches and their big guns all return for this one so we are entitled to expect a much better showing from the home side here. They also have much more batting quality and depth in their squad with the bat as well with the likes of Quinton de Kock and David Miller returning.


If there was ever a perfect confidence boost heading into an ODI series then it has to be the one that Australia enjoyed in the T20 matches. They didn’t just win those matches, they dominated them and produced the sort of performances which put fear into the opposition. They will head to the World Cup next month as one of the fancied runners to win the tournament and have eight matches, five here and three in India, to get up to speed ready to launch an assault on that competition.

Australia won the T20 series with the bat in hand and when you consider that the likes of David Warner and Marnus Labuschagne are back for the ODI games you would imagine that they are going to be even stronger with the bat here. The big difference for Australia could be with the ball where their Test duo of Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood are expected to keep the Australians more than competitive. They’ll be looking to repeat their T20 displays here.

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Team News

After sitting out the T20 series, Quinton de Kock, David Miller, Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje and Tabraiz Shamsi are all back in the squad for these ODIs and even though we are early in the piece it would be a surprise if all of them do not play.

Australia have David Warner, Marnus Labuschagne and Josh Hazlewood all available for this series but there is no place for the injured Steve Smith or Glenn Maxwell which means that Josh Inglis could get a chance to shine.


I suspect that the longer this series goes on we might get a fairer clash between the bat and the ball but that might not come in this match because in most cases the batters are competitively sharp after the T20 matches and the bowlers are coming in much colder, certainly the main bowlers at any rate. That makes me think we are going to get a high scoring game, which to be fair isn’t really breaking the rules of impossibility when you consider that in the last ODI on this ground 340 wasn’t enough for England to win batting first.

The boundaries line for this match is up at 59.5 but I’m not convinced that is high enough on a pitch which is nearly always good for batting and with no rain around we don’t need to worry about the outfield being sluggish or anything like that. Both sides, but Australia in particular, peppered the ropes in the T20 matches recently and I expect both of these teams to look to go after the bowling throughout this series to prepare for the big scores they will need in the World Cup so I’ll play the over on that boundary line.


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