The Chappell-Hadlee trophy is set for a perfect finale after a scintillating all-round performance from Australia in the second ODI. That gave us a perfect betting record on the underdogs so far this series and now the onus is back on New Zealand in the third and final ODI at Hamilton on Monday February 8.
If the Kiwis were clinical with the ball in the first ODI, in fact masterful, it was a subdued batting effort that made them end up with a below-par score in the second ODI. As is often the case, many players chipped with contributions for the Kiwis but important wickets at critical times hampered their final score. Will this prove to be their achilles heel once more?
Martin Guptill and Kane Williamson continue to be the focal points of their batting while Trent Boult and Matt Henry expect to lead the bowling. It was their inability to pick up early wickets that decided the second ODI but with favorable conditions they can prove deadly.
For the Aussies, David Warner and Usman Khawaja looked the perfect pair at the top of the order as Steve Smith continues to struggle for runs. It was the unexpected pairing of all-rounders Mitchell Marsh and John Hastings which took them past the post but they wouldn’t want to leave it for the lower order once again.
Josh Hazlewood got his mojo back with some crucial wickets late in the innings while Marsh shone once again with important top-order blows. Adam Zampa proved perfect with his variety in the middle but it was the control of John Hastings that was the key for the visitors. Can they come up with one more convincing bowling performance as a unit?
Smith will have added incentive to perform in the final ODI and clinch the series. But the Kiwis could surprise them and emerge victorious. It’s a national holiday in New Zealand and we’re going to back the Black Caps at odds of $2.07 at Sportsbet to get the win.
It is rare for Steve Smith to endure such low scores and so we’ll back him to get some runs under his belt and lead Australia’s batting at $4.00 at Sportsbet. Mitch Marsh has been important with the ball with the injury to James Faulkner so he offers some value to be Australia’s leading wicket taker at $5.00 at Sportsbet.
For the hosts, it will be the last ODI for Brendon McCullum and so expect his bat to swing its merry way. Back him to come out and score at least a 50 at odds of $2.60 at Sportsbet. Mitchell Santner could be vital with his wickets in the middle overs and offers a good price of $5.50 at Sportsbetto be their top wicket taker.
It looms as a thrilling match to end the ODI series with a bang!
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