It’s been a hectic 12 months of international cricket for India so it was no great surprise to see many top players rested for the Nidahas Trophy – a T20 Tri-Series that also features Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
The teams will play each other twice before the top two progress straight to the final later this month and it all starts with Sri Lanka versus India in Colombo on Tuesday.
Despite resting Virat Kohli, MS Dhoni, Bhuvneshwar Kumar and others, India start as hot favourites to take an opening win at odds of 1.36 with Betfair. That leaves the Sri Lankans on offer at 3.40 with both Betfair and Betway.
Neutrals might certainly think that there is some value in looking at the Sri Lankans: They beat India in the ICC Champions Trophy at 50 over level and while the second half of 2017 was poor, the New Year has looked more positive. Also, they are at home and close to full strength. We genuinely don’t think India will win all their games here but the visitors should carry their good recent form from South Africa to Colombo and record an opening victory.
Match Odds Summary: Sri Lanka: 3.40 (Betway), India 1.36 (Betfair – Editor’s Pick).
With no Virat Kohli, Rohit Sharma stands in as skipper and also takes his place at the head of India’s Top Batsman market. Rohit is on offer at 3.75 with Betfair while Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul can both be picked up at 4.00 with Betway.
Moving through the batting order, Suresh Raina can be taken at 4.50 with Betfair and while Manish Pandey is as short as 5.00 in some places, Betway’s price of 7.00 looks seriously good. Meanwhile, in the absence of MS Dhoni, Dinesh Karthik might be the value option at 12.00 with Betfair.
For the Sri Lankans, Kusal Mendis is the favourite at 4.33 with Betfair while Kusal Perera and Danushka Gunathilaka can both be picked up at 4.50 with Betfair again. We’ve no Angelo Mathews for this series so Dinesh Chandimal may be the best mid-price option at 7.00 while Thisara Perera’s late blows could land you a profit at 9.50 – both with Betfair again.
Kusal Mendis is our preference here but for an overall tip, Shikhar Dhawan started well against the South Africans and we’re backing him to bring that form to the Nidahas Trophy.
Top Batsman Odds Summary: India: Rohit 3.75 (Betfair), Dhawan 4.00 (Betway – Editor’s Pick), Rahul 4.00 (Betway), Raina 4.50 (Betfair), Pandey 7.00 (Betway), Karthik 12.00 (Betfair).
Sri Lanka: Kusal Mendis 4.33 (Betfair), Kusal Perera 4.50 (Betfair), Gunathilaka 4.50 (Betfair), Chandimal 7.00 (Betfair), Thisara Perera 9.50 (Betfair).
Other Side Bets
Some of our favourite side markets are open for this match and we could look at India’s Top Bowler betting which shows Yuzvendra Chahal as the hot favourite at best odds of 3.25 with Betway. Shardul Thakur is available at 4.33 with Betfair while Axar Patel and Jaydev Unadkat can be picked up at 4.50 – also with Betfair.
Chahal looks a good option there and because there is a fairly small set of available markets, we’ll close with that tip and hope that the bookmakers get busier with this series as it develops.
India Top Bowler Odds Summary: Chahal 3.25 (Betway – Editor’s Pick), Thakur 4.33 (Betfair), Patel 4.50 (Betfair), Unadkat 4.50 (Betfair).
There’s a lot of pressure on that Indian bowling unit which has lost most of its senior names for this series and that could be an area for Sri Lanka to target. However, we expect Rohit, Raina and Dhawan to power India to an opening win in Colombo.