What a series it's been so far, and we still have one Test to come! The 5th and final Test between England and India kicks off on Friday night and once again we have you covered with a full preview and betting tips for the clash below.
Remember to check out our Cricket Tips page for all of the cricket news in the lead up to what is set to be a massive 2021-22 Summer of cricket with BBL11 and The Ashes!
Old Trafford, Friday 10th September, 8.00pm (AEST)
It was a great result for BYB and followers in the 4th Test as we hit on India to win the Test at odds of $2.50. The Indians now lead the series 2-1 and will need a win or a draw in this Test to reclaim the Pataudi Trophy for the first time since all the way back in 2007.
Joe Root (c), Moeen Ali, James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow, Rory Burns, Sam Curran, Haseeb Hameed, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Dawid Malan, Craig Overton, Ollie Pope, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood
As we predicted in our 4th Test preview, so much weight was on Joe Root’s shoulders in the English batting order that it seemed inevitable that the dam was going to burst sooner or later. Aside from an Ollie Pope 80 in the 1st innings and a decent opening partnership in the 2nd, there was really no fight shown from the English batsmen.
As a result, Jos Buttler and Jack Leach have been called back into the squad for the 5th Test, which makes me think that the English side might opt to play just three paceman and one full time spinner, adding Buttler at No.7, lengthening a struggling batting line-up.
Jimmy Anderson, Chris Woakes and Ollie Robinson look like the three locks in the pace attack.
Virat Kohli (C), Ajinkya Rahane, Mayank Agarwal, Ravi Ashwin, Jasprit Bumra, Abhimanyu Easwaran, Ravi Jadeja, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Rishabh Pant, Axar Patel, Cheteshwar Pujara, KL Rahul, Wriddhiman Saha, Ishant Sharma, Rohit Sharma, Prithvi Shaw, Shardul Thakur, Hanuma Vihari, Umesh Yadav, Suryakumar Yadav
The key difference between the two sides in the 4th Test was the Indian form with the bat. While they made just 191 in the first innings on the back of 50s from Virat Kohli and Shardul Thakur, everyone came to the party in the 2nd innings.
8 of the 11 players in the Indian line-up passed the 20 run mark in their 2nd innings, led by a brilliant 127 from Rohit Sharma as the Indians piled on 466 to set up a winning score.
When the battling line-up plays like they did in the 2nd innings, there is absolutely no issue playing four seamers and Ravi Jadeja at No.7. The only question in the Indian team selection is which four seamers they decide to go with. Thakur gave them great lower order runs, so he will likely get another chance alongside Bumrah, Siraj and one more out of Umesh Yadav, Ishant Sharma and Mohammed Shami.
Luckily for the English side, they currently hold the Pataudi Trophy, so a win here would see the series end in a 2-2 tie and the home side retain the trophy. They can’t win the series, but retaining the trophy is the next best thing, so there is still plenty to play for this weekend.
Unfortunately, it looks like weather is set to play a big part in this Test match, with early forecasts suggesting rain on Friday, Saturday and Sunday in Manchester. With the Indians only needing a draw to secure the series win and the trophy for the first time since 2007, they will likely be doing rain dances at Old Trafford in the lead up to the Test.
With the Indian batting line-up having found some form in the 2nd innings of The Oval Test, it’s hard to see them being beaten in what will likely be a largely reduced overs Test. I think the Indian bowlers have started to figure Joe Root out to a degree as well, and another failure from the English captain in the 1st innings will make it near impossible for England to win.
Back the Indians to win this one in the ‘draw no bet’ market as a safety net for a rain affected game.
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