South Africa began a four-test series against Australia on Thursday in what promises to be a fascinating battle of the two best pace bowling lines up in the world at present and potentially that have been for a few years now in test cricket.
England may consider themselves slightly unlucky in the Ashes that they were the first team on the receiving end of Australia getting their much vaunted and eagerly awaited pace bowling attack of Starc, Hazelwood and Cummins all being fit and available and able to get on the park at the same time, with Starc and particularly Cummins missing large chunks of cricket over the last few years. The result being Australia able to hit England with a pace attack that was too hot to handle and if they stay together will make Australia very competitive on any wicket.
On the other side South Africa under new coach Ottis Gibson have announced that they are looking wherever possible to play four fast bowlers to accommodate their strength in the pace bowling department which saw them rough up India in their last home series with a collection of some of the best fast bowlers around in Rabada, Morkel, Philander and new kid on the block Ngidi.
What made the pace bowling advantage even more pronounced over India was the wickets South Africa ordered to play on with plenty of grass on the pitch and wickets offering plenty of pace and movement for the seamers and making life very difficult for all batsman on both sides.
From a betting perspective a repeat of such pitches with the quality and firepower on both sides with the bowl could offer some very interesting opportunity’s. In usual circumstances (a test match pitch being good for batting on for at least 3 days and sometimes more). Its quite difficult to oppose the likely candidates in the top batsman markets (1st innings of either innings is how they are decided). As such run machine Steve Smith for Australia would a likely winner giving his form of recent years but would also be priced up accordingly and offer little to no value. The same for the stand out batsmen in the South African line up of Amla and de Villiers who would both go off very short in the odds market.
The beauty of helpful pitch’s and excellent quick bowling to exploit the conditions are that in extreme circumstances – as was certainly seen in the South Africa V India series. Batting (especially early and against the new ball) can be a bit of a lottery and batsman can have a delivery “with their name on it” and be dismissed at any time against a near unplayable delivery.
Top batsman markets regularly have the top 3/4 batsman in the order as the favourites in the field with most sides wanting to get their best players in early and have has as much time as possible to build a score and construct their sides innings as well as give them as much opportunity as possible at the crease where a middle order batsman can easily be batting with tail-end batsman and certainly not have the same opportunity to build as substantial a score at their top order counterparts and their prices are usually a good deal higher as a result. With high class pace bowling and helpful conditions sides can (and were in SA V India series) 3 wickets down for not many and offer fine value with middle order batters who have three of the best players/market favourites effectively out of the race already and not up against much else in terms of batting talent in the lower order. It can also be a better time/place to bat with the ball losing some of its hardness and not reacting with such venom of the wicket and bowlers being into their second spells and not as fresh and quick as at the start of an innings.
It will be interesting to see what South Africa prepare with Australia being able to fight fire with fire in the pace bowling stakes. From a viewing point of view and as a chance to take advantage of the potential struggles of the top orders in the top batsman markets a repeat of the pitches for the India series would certainly be a positive.
My Cricket Council service has been proofed daily to BetFan since the 10th November 2017 and it has in that time made +305 Points Profit.
Click the link below it would be a pleasure to have you on board and taking your share of the profits being made.