ICC Champions Trophy betting (June 4): Blue times continue for Pakistan

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Updated: June 3, 2017

The Inside Word is delighted to welcome Himanshu “Himmy” Kishnani to the team with his preview of the latest battle between two of the world’s great sporting rivals, India and Pakistan, as they kick-off their respective campaigns in the ICC Champions Trophy.

 

ICC Champions Trophy (group B): India v Pakistan
Where: Edgbaston, Birmingham, England
When: Sunday, June 3, 7.30pm (AET)
Prices: India $1.44, Pakistan $2.75

Confirmed betting: India WIN (two units @ $1.44)

TIW says: India’s Men in Blue, who are the reigning champions of this tournament are expected to continue the dominance over their arch rivals Pakistan in the fourth group stage match of the ICC Champions Trophy on Sunday at Edgbaston. Under the captaincy of Virat Kohli and presence of the former skipper MS Dhoni in the side, India look better placed to be able to hold their nerves in such a high-pressure contest. India have four batsmen ranked top 20 in the world, and the batting unit has scored more than 300 runs in the last match.

 

There’s also a firepower-laden bowling unit that too has looked very impressive in the warm-up matches after bowling out New Zealand and Bangladesh for scores of 189 and 84 respectively. Form and fitness permitting, the only selection question with which India must wrestle is its bowling composition. They could go in with its five best bowlers, or drop either a spinner or a pacer and include Hardik Pandya for his all-round skills. Among the batsmen, Shikhar Dhawan, Rohit Sharma, Virat Kohli, Yuvraj Singh and Kedar Jadhav should be the first picks with Dhoni and Yuvraj Singh in the middle order as all-rounders.

As the last team to qualify for the tournament with narrowly edging out West Indies in the ICC rankings, Pakistan are not considered one of the main fancies in conditions. Their lead-up has been characterised by inconsistency across all facets of the game – batting, bowling, fielding and even the captaincy. Pakistan did register a win against Bangladesh, but a victory over a seventh-ranked side doesn’t fill us with confidence that Pakistan will improve their poor record against India. In this century, India and Pakistan have played 49 ODIs, with India winning 24 to Pakistan’s 25.

 

In the current decade, the two have played only nine ODIs of which India has won six to Pakistan’s three. The absence of Misbah ul Haq would be largely felt in the Pakistan team, especially in a game against India where the former captain is known to give his all Pakistan are expected to field several relatively new players, though there is plenty of experience in Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Hafeez and Sarfraz Ahmed (pictured above), the captain. Pakistan have already decided their XII, and Fakhar Zaman, Haris Sohail and Junaid Khan the ones to miss out.

 

 

• Selections are listed in three categories – 1) Suggested (likely bet but yet to be finalised); 2) Confirmed (locked in at the price listed); and 3) Leans (tips, but not recommended bets); all times quoted are Australian Eastern Time (AET); prices with thanks to bet365 (except where markets are not available), correct at time of publication. Results/comments on today’s games will follow in the next post.

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