What a finish it was to the first Test between Pakistan and Australia in the UAE last week! After their chances looked grim throughout the first four days, the Aussies held on for a draw on the last day of play to keep the series alive heading into the second Test match starting this Tuesday, the 16th of October from Abu Dhabi. We take a look at the game and give our betting tips below.
A major concern heading into the 2nd Test for the Australians was the health and fatigue levels of spearhead quick Mitchell Starc. Selectors were weighing up resting the left arm quick for the 2nd Test in preparation for the Aussies super important Summer Test series against India, however, Starc has declared himself ready to go for the match.
Starc will be important to the Aussies chances in Abu Dhabi, as the wicket upon the team’s arrival in Abu Dhabi was well-grassed and unlike the UAE pitches we’ve come to know in recent history. Whether or not the grass remains on the pitch by game time is another question, regardless, the pitch looks a lot more conducive to pace bowling than Dubai did a week ago.
The fragility of the Aussie batting lineup was a bit of an issue in the first Test. Usman Khawaja and Aaron Finch got the team off to a great start in their opening innings, compiling 142 for the first wicket, however, no other player was able to score over 12 in the first dig. Finch was solid again in the second innings, scoring 49 while Khawaja was the hero for the Aussies with a match saving 141. Travis Head redeemed his first innings duck with a score of 72 while Tim Paine was crucial down the stretch with 61*.
The obvious batsman on the chopping block heading into Abu Dhabi would have to be debutant Marnus Labuschagne, who scored just 13 runs over his two innings. Matty Renshaw is waiting in the wings and would allow Khawaja to drop down to his preferred position at number three and also give relief to Mitch Marsh, who looked a little out of his depth at number four.
Pakistan will be disappointed they weren’t able to capture the first Test win, but should be buoyed by their dominance over the first four days. Both Mohammad Hafeez and Haris Sohail were fantastic in the first innings as they notched up centuries while paceman Mohammad Abbas captured seven wickets in the match adding valuable support his team’s frontline spinners.
Yasir Shah will once again be the key man for Pakistan. After going wicketless in the first innings, the leg spinner gave his team a chance to win on the final day, taking four wickets and bowling 43 overs throughout the final two days.
Can’t see another draw occurring here, especially if the wicket remains as green as reports are suggesting it is. We would have thought that the price for the Aussies would have come in slightly given Mitchell Starc being available for the game combined with the current state of the wicket. At $3.40 we think they are great value here. Their batting line-up should be bolstered by the addition of Renshaw and everyone else sliding down a spot in the order.
The Aussies were unlucky with the toss in the first innings, and would have had a much better chance at winning that game if they were batting first. We think if they bat first in Abu Dhabi, they can post a good total and if they get unlucky and have to bowl first again, the chances of Starc and co. picking up crucial early wickets on a green top is much higher.
Another great 15 game slate in the MLB this Wednesday, the 26th of June! We have a preview and betting tips for some of the key games of the day here read more
The PGA Tour continues this weekend as we head to Detroit for the inaugural Rocket Mortgage Classic! We have a full preview and betting tips for the event here read more
Harness racing continues at Gloucester Park this Tuesday night and Trent Orwin has picked out his best bets from the card here! read more
It's the matchup that many have been waiting for in the round robin stage of the Cricket World Cup! Australia will face off against England on Tuesday night as the great cricketing rivalry gets another instalment. See our preview and tips for the big game here read more
There are approximately 90 Group 1 level harness races in Australia and New Zealand each year; we've highlighted some of most high profile races on the annual racing calendar here. read more
Harness racing form can be daunting to punters that are new to the sport and form analysis for the trots is certainly different to that of the gallops or greyhounds. We've listed what we think the most important factors to consider are when studying the form for a trots race. read more
Barrier draws are crucial in racing and they are especially important in harness racing. We've explained why barriers are such a key part of harness racing form study and their importance to determining a horse's chances here. read more
There are many common terms used in harness racing that may not make sense to those new to the sport. Our harness racing glossary will help you understand what some of the key terminology means. read more
The last of the AFL bye rounds came and went over the weekend with Round 14 and another set of Brownlow votes are up for grabs! See our reviews of the games and how we think the votes panned out here. read more
We are back once again with a full list of the AFL odds for all six games in Round 14! This weeks odds come courtesy of the folks at Ladbrokes read more
Round 13 of the AFL was fairly stock standard as all six of the favourites won in the shortened round! There were 36 Brownlow votes up for grabs over the round and we have our predictions as to how it panned out here read more
Only the six games in the AFL again this weekend due to the byes but still plenty of value on offer! We have a complete odds list of all six games courtesy of Sportsbet here read more