Before the tournament and, after the first round of games, most of us expected these two teams to have already qualified for the semi-finals. However, after surprise defeats to Sri Lanka and Pakistan respectively, India and South Africa are effectively playing out a quarter final at The Oval this Sunday.
It’s winner takes all with the losers going home after this match but how do the bookies see it?
It’s the tightest set of result betting we’ve seen so far with India the narrow favourites at a top price of 1.90 with Betfair, leaving South Africa just behind at best odds of 2.00 with Bet365.
While both sides should already be through, it could be argued that India have played the better cricket, making a respectable total of 321 against Sri Lanka. The bowling that followed wasn’t good but the Sri Lankan batters deserved to chase it down in an impressive display.
Against Pakistan, South Africa’s batsmen simply folded and although Morne Morkel led a fightback with the ball, the result never looked in doubt. This could really go either way; India will surely look to try to accommodate Ashwin but based on results, Kohli’s men may just have a very slight edge.
Match Odds Summary: India 1.90 (Betfair – Editor’s Pick), South Africa 2.00 (Bet365)
Although Kohli and Yuvraj fell cheaply on Thursday, there are no real issues with India’s batting with Shikhar Dhawan piling on the runs while Rohit Sharma and MS Dhoni have also found form.
Kohli leads the way in India’s top batsman market at best odds of 3.40 with Bet365 and Betfair while Rohit follows at a top price of 4.33 with Bet365. After making that brilliant century against the Sri Lankans, Shikhar Dhawan offers real value in this market at a best of 5.00 with Betfair while Yuvraj at 7.50 and Dhoni at 9.00, both with Bet365, give tempters down the order.
We didn’t do Virat Kohli any favours by tipping him last time out and, with the consistency shown since the start of this tournament, we’re going to switch to Rohit Sharma for this match.
Another favourite of ours is AB De Villiers but the South African skipper looks hopelessly out of form right now. In South Africa’s version of this top batsman market, AB is out at best odds of 5.00 with Betfair while Hashim Amla and Quinton De Kock start as joint favourites at 4.33 with Bet365.
Elsewhere, Faf Du Plessis is quoted at 5.50 with Bet365 while David Miller, who held his side’s innings together with an unbeaten 75 against Pakistan, is available at an excellent top price of 8.50 with Betfair.
We’re edging towards Amla to recover his form while Rohit Sharma is the overall tip from these markets.
Top Batsman Odds Summary: India: Kohli 3.40 (Bet365), Sharma 4.33 (Bet365 – Editor’s Pick), Dhawan 5.00 (Betfair), Yuvraj 7.50 (Bet365), Dhoni 9.00 (Bet365).
South Africa: Amla 4.33 (Bet365), De Kock 4.33 (Bet365), De Villiers 5.00 (Betfair), Du Plessis 5.50 (Bet365), Miller 8.50 (Betfair).
Other Side Bets
We did at least take an overall profit from Bhuvneshwar Kumar as the top Indian bowler against Sri Lanka and you can claim the same bet for the South Africa match at a top price of 4.50 with Bet365. Other options in this market include Bumrah at 4.00 with Bet365 and Betfair, Ashwin at 5.00 with Betfair and Umesh Yadav at 5.00 with Bet365.
Instead, we’ll cross to the individual century market and take odds of 1.61 from Bet365 on any player from either side to score a century. Hopefully the weather will be kind and we’ll get a full game and, with so many in-form world class batters on show, this could be the safest bet of the day.
Will a Century be Scored Odds Summary: Yes 1.61 (Bet365 – Editor’s Pick), No 2.30 (Bet365).
It could all come down to a batting shoot out and, if we have a full game, the side batting first will want to push towards 350 in a tournament where chasing 300+ hasn’t been a major problem. It’s tight but, looking at South Africa’s game against Pakistan and remembering that lost ODI series against England last month, we’ll edge towards India.