Australia v Sri Lanka Second T20 Betting: Tourists eye unlikely series success

Finch did the business in game one
Finch did the business in game one

Ed Hawkins previews game tow from Geelong on Sunday and forecasts another tight game with the tourists better than people think...

"we are confident the tourists can trade as favourites here now they have the respect of the market"

Recommended Bet
Trade Sri Lanka from 3.1511/5 to 1.75/7

Australia v Sri Lanka
Sunday February 19
TV: live on BT Sport


Australia got a nasty shock in game one when they were beaten off the last ball in Melbourne. It shouldn't have come as too much of a surprise.

This is not even a reserve Australia team. It looks more like a Prime Minister's XI. There's nothing they can do about that considering they are also on tour of India at the same time. Go figure.

So Aaron Finch, Adam Zampa and James Faulkner are the only regular faces. There are good players here - Michael Klinger, Pat Cummins and AJ Tye - but they are in by default.

It's worth repeating that there is no Steve Smith, David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Marsh or Mitchell Starc.

Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka are one win from a third successive T20 series win in Australia. That's impressive for a team consisted of, frankly, a lot of players no-one has heard of.

The most familiar names are Lasith Malinga, Upul Tharanga, the skipper, Nuwan Kulasekera and Chamara Kapugedera.

The new breed may not be on the radar of franchise teams but there is a lot to like about the swashbuckling Niroshan Dickwella and Dilshan Munaweera. Asela Gunaratne's maiden half-century in the format was the cornerstone either side of decent efforts from the former two at the 'G.

Seekuge Prasanna and Lakshan Sandakan are good spinners against an unsure Australia bating attack.

First-innings runs

Kardinia Park is hosting its first international. Just south of Melbourne, it has actually hosted not much cricket all. It's a footy venue. There has only been one T20 match there previously - a Big Bash affair way back in 2009 when Victoria posted 161. This will be a drop-in pitch so there's not a huge amount past scorecards could have told us. The size of the ground is good. This won't be some six-hit frenzy because of short boundaries.

Match odds

Australia are 1.4640/85 with Sri Lana 3.1511/5. And those prices look about right. The Lankans were 4.216/5 for game one and we had to go in on that, reckoning they were about a 3.55/2 chance.

So they have surpassed expectations. It could be another tight game and we are confident the tourists can trade as favourites here now they have the respect of the market.

It would not have been a surprise if an inexperienced Sri Lanka team had lost their way after a solid start in the chase but they held on. It is still something to be mindful of, however.

The weather forecast is not so good with showers expected. Any reduction in overs should assist our Sri Lankla wager.

Top Australia runscorer

Before the MCG contest we said Finch did not have much to beat and so it proved. Only he, Klinger and Travis Head are actual specialists. Maybe we're being a bit sniffy on Ben Dunk but he's a keeper, too. Only Finch knows this ground having spent time as a youth nearby. So he could go in again at 3.45. Klinger is 4.1 and Head 4.57/2. Finch is 7/2 to be the top match batsman with Sportsbook and is 4/5 to score 24.5 runs or more.

Top Sri Lanka batsman

The 7.413/2 about Gunaratne repeating won't last long. Dickwella looks way too short at 3.8514/5 with Munaweera appealing far more at 5.04/1. We still like Kapugedera at big numbers even though he is firmly in the middle-order. He has good nous in case the top get blown away. Dickwella is 5/6 with Sportsbook to bust 18.5.

Recommended Bet

Trade Sri Lanka from 3.1511/5 to 1.75/7

Ed Hawkins P-L

2017: +9.87pts
2016: +18.1pts
2015: +38pts
2014: +31.5pts
2013: +25pts
Based only on available prices. Does not include back-to-lay in-running match advice or commission rate. Figures 2013-2016 on 1pt level stakes. New points system (0.5pt-5) introduced for 2017.
*Follow Ed on Twitter @cricketbetting

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