ICC Champions Trophy betting (June 8): Backs to the wall for Lions v India

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Updated: June 7, 2017

India are coming off a sparkling win against their archrivals Pakistan in the ICC Champions Trophy and playing with a lot of confidence. If they can lift their performance in the field, our cricket man Himanshu Kishnani expects they’ll be hard to stop in this Group B clash against neighbours, the Lions of Sri Lanka, for who this is virtually sudden death.

 

ICC Champions Trophy (Group B): India v Sri Lanka
Where: The Oval, London, England
When: Thursday, June 8, 7.30pm (AET)
Prices: India $1.25, Sri Lanka $4.25

Confirmed betting: India WIN (three units @ $1.25)

TIW says: We elected to skip last night’s clash between Pakistan and South Africa, which proved an astute decision after rain again intervened. It was Pakistan who took a shock win from the game thanks to Messrs Duckworth and Lewis at 3-119 in response to South Africa’s 8-219. Let’s hope that tonight’s match doesn’t suffer the same fate as the reigning champions look to continue their momentum in the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy in this group stage match against Sri Lanka. India have won four of their past five ODIs and three of the four they have played this year. India put in a strong batting and bowling display in their opening win over Pakistan but the same cannot be said about their fielding.

 

They dropped two catches and misfielded on numerous occasions in a performance that skipper Virat Kohli rated “six on ten”. But they remain a clear second pick behind England to win this tournament. It’s telling that India have won most their ODI matches played against Sri Lanka at neutral venues, with the head-to-head record reading 26. This underlines the comfort level of the Indian team regardless of where they play against their neighbours. Kohli has a batting average of 52.66 and MS Dhoni (pictured above) with an average of 61.35 against Sri Lanka. There is a slight possibility that they might include R. Ashwin or Mohammed Shami in tonight’s line-up.

Sri Lanka have been very disappointing in this format of the game so far this year with just one win in eight matches, and that came against Bangladesh (ranked seventh in the world). Against the higher ranked nations, they have suffered big defeats just like the one in their opening game against South Africa. Sri Lanka have not been as competitive since the retirement of superstars Kumar Sangakarra and former captain Mahela Jayawardene but current skipper is back for this match-up after suffering a calf injury. He replaces stand-in captain and in-form opener Upul Tharanga, who is now unavailable for the remainder of the group stage due to an over-rates suspension.

 

Chamara Kapugedera, too, injured himself while training on match eve and following an MRI scan was ruled out from the rest of the tournament. He will be replaced by Danushka Gunathilaka. In addition, there is a possibility that Thisara Perera will play as an all-rounder. It rained through the day in London on Tuesday, forcing India to cancel their training session. The weather, however, cleared on the eve of the game, and the forecast for today isn’t too bad. The pitches at The Oval have generally been batting friendly, but they also haven’t been nightmares for bowlers. There is a decent grass covering on the pitch for Thursday’s game, and coupled with overcast conditions, bowlers should fancy their chances as well.

 

 

• 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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