After a comfortable win for Afghanistan against Ireland in the first T20I, Asghar Aghan’s men would be eyeing to seal the three-match series in the 2nd game which is scheduled to be held, at the Greater Noida Sports Complex Ground, on March 8.
While many eyes will be on the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup final on Sunday, there’s going to be more T20 action around the world with Afghanistan locking horns with Ireland for the second game of the three-match series. Afghanistan looked comfortable in thrashing Ireland in the first T20I and will be favourites to win the second fixture of the series as well. Meanwhile, it’s a do or die situation for Ireland who need to save the series. The venue remains the same one as the first T20I, which was also held at the Greater Noida Sports Complex Ground.
With so much of T20 cricket happening, the chances of winning profits pump up higher. And as there are too many factors and too many games to consider here, we are here to help you one by one. So here are some of the handpicked winning bets from Sunday’s T20I between Afghanistan and Ireland.
Ireland is one of the teams that is heavily dependent on its experienced cricketers even in the shortest format of the game. The testimony to this is the fact that players like Paul Stirling and Kevin O’Brien have more often than not taken up the responsibility of the batting even when the rest of the team underperformed. In the last game as well, both Stirling and O’Brien delivered again only to face defeat at the hand of their good ol opponents. But the point is, like a postman Kevin O’Brien always delivers. In the last game as well, the right-handed opener contributed a quickfire 17-ball 35 to accelerate the innings at an early stage.
His head to head from against Afghanistan, O’Brien’s numbers have been consistent. In the last four T20Is against Ireland, O’Brien has accumulated scores of 35, 74, 37, 5. That’s 37.75 runs on average. Moreover, looking at his current form, the seasoned batsman has scored 35, 36, 4, 48 - that’s an average of 30.75 runs. Also in, both, head to head games and overall form O’Brien has scored more than 25 runs in three occasions out of four matches in each arena. Bet365 has placed the odds for O’Brien to score more than 25.5 runs at 1.83, and we say it’s a reasonably safe bet that you shouldn’t miss out on.
As we have already established, both seasoned openers of the Irish team- Paul Stirling and Kevin O’Brien- are the most important components forming the team. But on several occasions, more often than not, one of these batsmen has trumped the other. And looking into the exciting data of this player battle, we have found out that Paul Stirling holds a higher place than his fellow opener. Looking at the last game, both Irish mainstays gave a great start to the innings in the first half after they chose to bat after winning the toss. O’Brien scored a 17-ball 35 but it was Stirling who stayed longer in the middle and contributed a splendid 41-ball 60. That made us look at their numbers when playing against Afghanistan and compare them to validate our argument here.
In the last four games against the Afghans, O’Brien has recorded scores of 35, 74, 37, 5 runs. While in the same games(same order) Stirling has posted scores of 60, 10, 91, 23 runs. So that gives us three cases in four matches wherein Stirling has trumped his opening partnership. Overall form-wise, O’Brien has scored 35, 36, 4, 48 in the last four T20Is for Ireland in comparison to Stirling’s form- 60, 11, 17, 95. That’s three occasions out of four matches, yet again, where Stirling performed better than O’Brien. Bet365 has placed the odds for Stirling to score more runs than Kevin O’Brien at 1.80.
Afghanistan have an unsaid advantage over their Irish counterparts in the shortest formats of the game. One of the biggest forces behind this is but the best bowler and also arguably the best performer that Afghanistan has in its weaponry. In the first T20I clash between Ireland and Afghanistan, Rashid Khan proved it yet again that he is one of the best T20I bowlers out there. The Man of the Match from the previous game is a consistent star in the shortest format and, in fact, against Ireland, his numbers get even better.
He averages 7.21 with the ball with an incredible strike rate of 7.3 against the Irishmen. These set of numbers are absolutely spectacular even by Rashid Khan’s standards. So looking at the seasoned legspinner’s numbers against the Irish team, we have dug deep and extracted the number of wickets in the last five head to head games - 3, 5, 4, 2, 4 wickets, respectively. The incredible part is, in no game has any other Afghan bowler bagged more wickets than the young legspinner and he has been the top team bowler four times in this sample space. Also, in the last three games that were played in India Rashid bagged 3, 5,4 wickets, more in each game than his fellow bowlers. This further validates the fact that Khan will top once again. With Bet365 placing the odds for Rashid Khan to be the top team bowler at 2.50, it’s a big-money bet that I believe no one should miss out on.
Two teams have collided a number of times in the past and both sides have scored plenty of runs in most of those encounters. If the rain does not play spoilsport, you can expect a lot of runs from both Afghanistan and Ireland, making it a high-scoring encounter. Afghanistan and Ireland have faced each other on four occasions at the Great Noida Sports Complex Ground and on two occasions the total runs in the match have gone past 330 runs quite easily. A total of five times the total match scores have gone north of 330 runs when these two teams have clashed in the past. The last three occasions Afghanistan and Ireland have locked horns in this format of the game, the total match score has gone past 330 runs on two occasions. Bet 365 is offering odds of 1.83 for total match score to be over 330.5 runs and it could well be the case as there are a lot of runs in offer if a full match is played out at this venue.
Afghanistan will have the edge in this market scenario as they have done it quite a number of times in the past against other opponents as well. In the last five matches, Afghanistan have hit more fours than their opponents on three occasions. In the last five head to head clashes, Afghanistan have smashed more boundaries than Ireland on four occasions and here are the numbers (AFG-IRE) : 12 -19, 19 -17, 19 -17, 13 -10, 11- 3. At the Greater Noida Sports Complex Ground, Afghanistan have hit more fours than Ireland on two out of four occasions and one one occasion, the two teams hit equal number of boundaries. Bet 365 is offering generous odds of 1.72 for Afghanistan to hit more fours in the forthcoming fixture and that is the most likely outcome.
You must be thinking I am out of my mind that I am backing Ireland for this market! But you have got to trust me when I am saying this as I have stats to back my claim and you would go and place your bets as well by the time you finish reading this paragraph. In the last five matches, Ireland have scored more runs than their opponents for the first wicket in two occasions and on one occasion they have scored equal amounts of runs for the opening stand. In the last five head to head matches, Ireland have scored more runs than Afghanistan in two out of five occasions. The two sides have locked horns on four occasions at the Greater Noida Sports Complex and Ireland have had the edge on three occasions when it comes to the highest opening partnership. In the last two occasions at this venue, Ireland’s first wicket partnership average is 64.0 compared to Afghanistan’s 38.5. With Bet 365 offering odds of 2.00 for Ireland to have a better opening partnership than Afghanistan, I believe you should be taking this risk and back the Irishmen.