BOOKIES and punters agree – Australia could be set to waltz away with the Cricket World Cup as the tournament prepares to get under way this weekend in their own back yard.
Unibet, who offer joint hosts Australia at a leading price of 2-1 to win the tournament, also have the Aussies dominating most of the major markets will the likes of Mitchell Johnson and David Warner top of the pile.
England’s chances are all but written off by the bookie despite some tentative suggestions that they could be dark horses. Eoin Morgan’s men are 10-1 to win the tournament with few of their players threatening the top player markets. Only Jimmy Anderson (20-1 top wicket taker) and Ian Bell (22-1 top run scorer) come close to featuring in the mix.
With cricket increasingly favouring the batsmen and records seemingly tumbling on a monthly basis it looks almost certain this will be a World Cup dominated by the bat. Unibet are offering specials such as 14-1 for six sixes to be hit in a single over, 12-1 for AB De Villiers’ recent 31-ball century record to be surpassed and 3-1 a century is hit in less than 50 balls.
And it’s the usual suspects at the top of most of the batting markets with the likes of De Villiers, Brendon McCullum and Chris Gayle all there or thereabouts. However, South African Hashim Amla is the 8-1 favourite to top the tournament run scorer betting. De Villier is 13-2 favourite to score the fastest century with McCullum 5-1 favourite to hit the most sixes.
Also, check out the free Golden Bat competition at Ladbrokes where you pick the six batsmen you reckon will score the most runs. Track their progress throughout the tournament and there’s over £2000 worth of free bets up for grabs.
The action starts tonight with co-hosts New Zealand v Sri Lanka followed at 3:30am UK time by Australia v England, with the Aussies 4-11 at bet365 and the English 5-2 at Betway.
Elsewhere today there’s loads of top-class tennis action with the big guns all playing again in Rotterdam and tournament favourite Kei Nishikori on court in Memphis plus women’s matches in Antwerp.
Other sporting highlights include golf from the PGA and Euro Tours plus Super League and rugby union. As always put up your tips and chat here and good luck with your bets.