India Improve Their Betting Odds Going Into The First Test On December 17
The highly anticipated test series between India and Australia is less than a week away. India will play four tests against Australia with the first test starting on December 17 at the Adelaide Oval. This will be the first day/night test match that India is playing on Australian soil, and they will be very keen to start the series on a winning note.
The betting odds have improved for India going into the first test due to their performance in the second three-day tour match game. Sportsbooks still have Australia as the favorites with odds of 8/15 and India at 6/4. Should you put money on India for the first test?
We list out the pros and cons that India need to address going into the first test. This will help you make a calculated decision on whether you should play it safe and bet against India or take a risk and back team India.
What We Can Learn From The Tour Game
India had an average outing in the first tour game against Australia A. They were expected to do a lot better in the second tour game at the SCG. However, things started on a rather dismal note for India as they won the toss, batted first and were bowled out for 194 in less than 49 overs.
India should have been bowled out for less than 125, but a fighting partnership from the tail allowed them to get close to 200. J Bumrah (55) and M Siraj (22) gave India a chance to compete and showed the rest of the batsman what is possible if they were willing to fight it out in the middle.
In cricket, you should never judge a pitch unless both teams bat on it. India bounced back brilliantly by dismissing Australia A for 108 in less than 33 overs. The fast bowlers picked up all the wickets with Shami and Saini taking 3 each, Bumrah took 2 and Siraj took 1.
The Indian batsman took inspiration from Bumrah and Siraj’s performance in the first innings, and it showed in the second innings. P Shaw failed again, but M Agarwal (61) and S Gill (65) spent some quality time in the middle.
However, it was H Vihari and R Pant who stole the show as both batsmen made impressive centuries. Vihari held the middle-order together and remained unbeaten on 104 of 104 balls at the end of the second day. R Pant played an aggressive knock scoring 103 of 73 balls at a strike rate of 140 and also remained unbeaten.
The big lesson for team India is that they need to believe in themselves and be prepared to fight it out at all times. The big lesson for the selectors is that they now need to make very important decisions regarding the playing XI for the Adelaide test.
Adelaide Test – Which Batsman Should Play
The selectors need to go on current form and what they have seen in the two tour games to finalize the batting line-up. Are they going to open with M Agarwal and KL Rahul or M Agarwal and S Gill? That’s the first question they need to answer.
C Pujara, V Kohli and A Rahane are going to three, four and five. G Vihari has put his hand up to stake a claim for the number 6 spot, and with no H Pandya present, he will have to play. W Saha came on this tour as the number one test-keeper, but he has not performed with the bat in the tour games and Pant’s impressive century must put him ahead of Saha for the first test.
The question is, will the selectors give Pant the push or still stick with Saha? This one decision could be a match changer.
Adelaide Test – Which Bowlers Should Play
The bowling line-up for the first test is less of a headache for the selectors. There is the place for only four bowlers – three of them will be fast bowlers and one spinner. J Bumrah, M Shami are certain and based on U Yadav’s performance in the first tour game, he could be the third fast bowler.
Saini bowled well in the tour game, but he is unlikely to push out U Yadav. If Yadav does not perform in the first test, Saini could be considered for the second test. However, if Saini can pick up more wickets in the third and final day of the tour game, he could give the selectors a good headache. R Ashwin is likely to get the nod for the role of the lone spinner.
It makes sense for you to bet on India if the selectors get things right. If they get it wrong, you could end up losing your bets!