Ed Hawkins works out which of Australia's three batting giants is best to follow for runs in the decider at The Gabba from Thursday night...
"In all conditions in the last three years, Labuschagne almost 12 points"
Australia v India
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Australia destroy teams at The Gabba. They have not lost there since losing to the brilliant West Indies outfit in 1988. They are aiming for an eighth consecutive win in Brisbane. And it's the batsmen who sharpen the knife.
So much so that we are spoilt for choice when it comes to ground form for the Holy Trinity. Steve Smith, David Warner and Marnus Labuschagne have excellent records. Smith has 579 runs in six at the venue, Warner has 817 runs in eight and Labuschagne (on his state home ground) 266 in two.
On win rates in all conditions, Smith and Labuschagne rate value on Betfair Sportsbook's prices for top Australia bat. At 11/4 Smith gives us an edge of around eight implied probability points and Labuschagne four points at 3/1. Warner goes the other way, giving almost six points to the bookies.
When three such strong players have such strong records on such a strong battinga wicket, it could be wise to swerve such a prescriptive market. Betting one of them for runs, rather than to score more than anyone else could be shrewd.
Sportsbook price all three for a first-innings 50 at 6/5, 7/5 and 6/4. Smith gives us a one-point edge on form in all conditions in the last three years, Labuschagne almost 12 points while Warner is again the odd man out giving up six points the other way.
For centuries in the first dig, Smith is 11/4, Labuschagne 7/2 and Warner 4/1. On the same filter, only Labuschagne is value. He gives us 1.3%. It is safe to say that Labuschagne is the most underrated of the trio, though. In time, he could surpass both in terms of run hauls.
There are is also disparity on the performance market (one point per run, 10 per catch, 20 per wicket and 25 per stumping) quote (over or under at 5/6) with the home players. There's a whopping gap with Smith, who has been on a poor run, but even so this is not the venue to be taking him on. Warner, unlike his odds for honours and bat-raises, is value.
At the SCG we had two nice winners with Smith and Cummins copping on top bat and top bowler respectively. We have a rule of not following in for back-to-back wins so although Cummins' record is insane, we'll take a day off at Sportsbook's 2/1.
The only bit of value we can see on the India markets is Ravi Ashwin at 5/2 for top bowler. But that has already been advised in our match preview. On win rate, he is giving us 3.7%.
Average performance make-up at home last 3 years/Sportsbook quote
Paine 89/ 88.5
Australia top bat wins/matches
Paine 2 1t/30
Australia top bowler wins/matches
Lyon 8 4t/45
Hazelwood 7 4t/37
Starc 10 2t/36
Cummins 12 4t/32
India top batsman wins/matches
Pujara 5 t/30
India top bowler wins/matches
Bumrah 3 t/16
Shami 3 2t/26
Ashwin 8 2t/24
Why India are under pressure at The Gabba on Cricket...Only Bettor
Ed Hawkins P-L
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. Includes Hawk-Eye stats column p-l & COB Best Bets