"13", "name" => "Cricket", "category" => "2009 Ashes", "path" => "/var/www/vhosts/betting.betfair.com/httpdocs/cricket/", "url" => "https://betting.betfair.com/cricket/", "title" => "Ashes 2009 Betting: Two teams' turmoil sends odds into a spin : 2009 Ashes : Cricket", "desc" => "Australia in to even money in Ashes betting after England suffer seismic shock to team structure with rumoured resignations of Pietersen and Moores....", "keywords" => "", "robots" => "index,follow" ); $category_sid = "sid=4617"; ?>

Ashes 2009 Betting: Two teams' turmoil sends odds into a spin

2009 Ashes RSS / Ed Hawkins / 07 January 2009 / Leave a comment " class="free-bet-btn" rel="external" onclick="javascript: pageTracker._trackPageview('/G4/inline-freebet');" target="_blank">Free Bet

Australia in to even money in Ashes betting after England suffer seismic shock to team structure with rumoured resignations of Pietersen and Moores.

Australia shortened slightly in the 2009 Ashes market immediately after their dramatic dead rubber victory over South Africa at the SCG. But the dip was not as big when news broke that England's captain and coach had fallen on the same sword.

Following Australia's Sydney success the prices were [2.14], [2.62] and [5.90] respectively.

But it was all change when it was announced that Kevin Pietersen and Peter Moores had quit, leaving England rudderless a fortnight before a tour of West Indies begins.

Australia are currently [2.02] with England [2.74] and the draw [5.7].

England, under the expected leadership of Andrew Strauss, will probably steady themselves and therefore the market. Yet even without the turmoil, when the two sides meet in Cardiff in June it will be the most open contest between the old enemies for years.

Australia, smarting from their first home series defeat for 16 years, must play South Africa three more times before the first Test against England in Cardiff on July 8 while the home side have to negotiate six Tests, home and away, against West Indies.

Despite all this cricket still to be played, it would be a surprise if there were further major upheavals in the market. Indeed, for Australia not to go off for an Ashes series at bigger than even money for the first time since 1989, they would have to win in South Africa, a slim prospect which contrasts to the weighty issues that need to be resolved in their team.

Of course, if Australia have rarely been as big, England have rarely been as small. Their current odds are probably the skinniest for 20 years, too. For the last meeting between the sides, England were [8.00] with Australia around [1.20]. In 2005, when England produced a stunning 2-1 win, Michael Vaughan's men were [4.00] and Australia [1.35].

The historic prices give a good indicator as to how Australia's light has dimmed and although it is tremendous to see such a hotly-contested betting heat for the first time in two decades in what has too often been a one-sided event, make no mistake that it is mainly down to the fact that both sides are as in poor a shape as each other.

Australia have found out how tough it is to win Test matches when they do not possess the two genius talents of Shane Warne and Glenn McGrath
. In the wake of that duo their bowling attack has been described as ordinary. Well, of course it is, because like every other international side, bar Sri Lanka and Muttiah Muralitharan, they must now field mere mortals.

Series defeats to India and South Africa aside, the weak nature of their bowlers is the greatest reason for their demise. Punters' confidence in Ricky Ponting's team is rightly shot after they conceded the second highest fourth innings total in history against South Africa in the first Test at Perth and then in game two allowed the visitors to recover from 184 for seven to post 459.

There can't be much self-belief in the England side either. Like Australia, their bowling has holes in it, as was evident by the way India crushed them in Chennai. It is the off-the-field issues, however, which will cause the most fretting in the short term.

In reality, the resignation of both Pietersen and Moores could be a boost to England's Ashes chances. The two have been exposed as novices in terms of making the big decisions at international level, not to mention dealing with the complexities of an under-pressure dressing room.

If the camp was as unhappy as it has been reported under the leadership of Pietersen then it can only be considered a good thing that he is no longer skipper. Strauss, the likely replacement, is amiable, shrewd and more than capable of adding buoyancy both to team spirits and their Ashes odds.

Post a comment