Ultimately it was a big defeat for India at the start of this tour but there were times when Virat Kohli’s men could have perhaps gained an advantage. We felt that the weather might have a say at some point and when rain washed out the third day at Newlands, the pitch became virtually unplayable when matters resumed.
Now it’s on the SuperSport Park at Centurion and in a three-match series, India need to avoid another loss to stay in it but naturally the hosts have strengthened in the pre-match betting.
South Africa start as favourites once again and you can pick up the hosts at 1.57 with Betfair for the win. Victory for India is on offer at 4.50 with Betfair again while the draw is available at a top price of 5.50 with Betway.
There are selection questions on both sides and it could benefit India to see Dale Steyn missing out for the rest of the series but the tourists still have to deal with Kagiso Rabada and Vernon Philander who took nine wickets at Newlands. Conditions were favourable to seamers to say the least but with their spinners largely negated due to the surfaces here, it could be another difficult five days for India unless their batters can cope with the bounce and lateral movement.
Match Odds Summary: South Africa 1.57 (Betfair – Editor’s Pick), India 4.50 (Betfair), The Draw 5.50 (Betway).
Former Proteas Captain Graeme Smith has suggested that India look at including KL Rahul and Ajinkya Rahane for the second test – two men who he believes are suited to South African conditions. Selection is certainly an issue but one man who will definitely start is Virat Kohli who is favourite to score most Indian runs on first innings at 3.60 with Betfair. Cheteshwar Pujara was our pick last time and while he’s come under attack for a cautious approach, his resilience at Cape Town will make him a strong option at 4.20 with Betfair again.
Other alternatives could include Murali Vijay at 6.00 and Shikhar Dhawan at 5.00, both with Betfair while the two men tipped to come in by Graeme Smith, Rahul and Rahane are both at 6.00 with Betfair again.
Hardik Pandya’s superb counter attacking would have given the profit in the first test and he provides the value down the order at 10.00 with Betfair but, assuming he keeps his place, we will keep faith with Pujara once again.
For South Africa, it was AB De Villiers and Faf Du Plessis who led the recovery at Newlands after a poor start. AB scored most runs in that South African first innings and he starts at 4.00 with Betfair to score most South African runs on first innings at Cape Town.
Hashim Amla follows at 4.50 with Betfair while Faf Du Plessis, Aiden Markram and Dean Elgar are all at 5.00 with Betfair again. Quinton De Kock might just give some value down the order at an excellent 9.50 with Betfair but while we’re backing Amla to come good, Pujara is our overall tip from the two sets of markets.
Top Batsmen Odds Summary: India: Kohli 3.60 (Betfair), Pujara 4.20 (Betfair – Editor’s Pick), Dhawan 5.00 (Betfair), Vijay 6.00 (Betfair), Rahul 6.00 (Betfair), Rahane 6.00 (Betfair), Pandya 10.00 (Betfair).
South Africa: De Villiers 4.00 (Betfair), Amla 4.50 (Betfair), Markram 5.00 (Betfair), Elgar 5.00 (Betfair), Du Plessis 5.00 (Betfair), De Kock 9.50 (Betfair).
Other Side Bets
Our one winning bet from the first test was delivered by Bhuvneshwar Kumar who returned best first innings figures for India of 4/87 at Newlands. Punters could certainly follow that again and take a slightly smaller price of 4.20 with Betfair this time although it could be that there is more competition from Jasprit Bumrah who is at 4.50 with Betfair again.
However, we may edge towards the first innings lead market which has India as outsiders at 2.70 with Royal Panda. The tourists’ real problems came on second innings and that could happen again. This is a bit of a ‘hedge bet’ but we expect a better effort from India’s batters on first innings at least.
First Innings Lead Odds Summary: South Africa 1.40 (Royal Panda), India 2.70 (Royal Panda – Editor’s Pick).