England and Pakistan have locked horns in the first Test of the three-match series at the Emirates Old Trafford from August 5, Wednesday.
England are on the backfoot yet again in the first match of the series and the only difference this time - the opponent is Pakistan! What an incredible day Pakistan had on the field and it all started with a superhuman effort with the bat from Shan Masood, who scored a whopping 156 runs and it was his third consecutive century in the longest format. When England came out to bat, they looked nervy from ball one and the visitors took advantage of it and removed the two openers Rory Burns and Dominic Sibley. The in-form batsman Ben Stokes got out for a duck and the reason was a peach of a delivery from Mohammad Abbas. England skipper Joe Root did not last long as well and England are now facing a threat surrendering a huge lead as they ended the day with just 92 runs on the board for the loss of four wickets, still trailing by 234 runs. While England will be trying to escape that follow-on, you can take a look at the best markets I have gathered for you.
‘The modern version of Ian Bell,’ as many are referring to him, Ollie Pope has risen through the ranks and it looks like he is going to keep that number five spot in the Three Lions lineup. But the way Pakistani seamers have bowled on Day 2 to remove the top half of the English batting order, it does not look like England will be able to start the second half of this Test on level terms. The only way England can avoid that is riding on the shoulders of this man who has been quite good in recent times but that won’t be enough. Pope averages 46.92 in his Test career and that goes down to 33.42 when he plays in home conditions. In seven matches he has racked up 446 runs at an average of 63.71 including one hundred and three half tons in 2020. Under the leadership of Joe Root, the flamboyant right-hander averages 53.27 including one hundred and four half centuries. In the first match of any Test series, his averages plummets to 14.75 but he has already exceeded that as he is unbeaten on 46 runs. The margin for us to win is quite massive here and therefore you need to head over to the Bet 365 website to place your bets.
How many of you are missing Jonny Bairstow behind the stumps in the longest format of the game for England? To be honest, I feel this position should have never been traded as Buttler has definitely not lived upto the mark. Buttler has not been able to live upto the hype that England and Wales Cricket Board selectors created around him and it has cost England a number of games in this particular format. The wicket-keeper batsman averages 31.84 in his Test career including just a solitary century and 16 half centuries. He has played five Test matches against Pakistan and has managed to score 210 runs at an average of 35.00 with only two fifties to his tally. In this calendar year, Buttler is averaging just 24.70 scoring just 247 runs in seven games with just one fifty. In the first match of any Test series, Jos Buttler averages 22.30 and these are scary signs for England. These numbers are suggestive of the fact that Buttler is not going to cross that 39 run mark tomorrow, which means we have a chance to win 1.83 times our investment. William Hill is offering generous odds for this market and this is our chance to make it big.
Mohammad Abbas has risen to the occasion once again and he has done exactly what was expected of him. He held a brilliant record against England anyway but it is still early days to claim despite his 30 year old body. However, to remove Dominic Sibley and the incredible Ben Stokes early on in the innings, was something England did not need. He finished the day with figures of 7-0-24-2 and one can feel that he is going to add more scalps to his name on Day 3. Abbas has played 19 Test matches and has managed to add 77 scalps to his name already at an average of 20.53. This is his third Test against the Three Lions and he already has 12 wickets at an outstanding average of 13.83; the best thing about this record is that he achieved all of it on the English soil. In the first match of any series, he has played seven matches and has picked up 29 wickets at an average of 17.65. William Hill is offering the odds of 4.00 for Abbas to pick up four wickets or more on Day 3 and there are high chances of it happening.