Ed Hawkins discusses whether the Aussie opener is worth following for runs in the final match in Dubai on Sunday...
"In the last two years Finch is still topping the charts with most regularity. He has five wins in 17, a record which suggests the 11/4 is still not quite short enough"
Numbers back up opener
It is fair to say that Aaron Finch is stuck in a rut. In three T20 innings in the UAE, he has managed scores of 1, 0 and 3. It is a terrible return for Finch against the United Arab Emirates and then in two matches against Pakistan. Can it continue?
Finch might argue that this paltry haul is the lot of the thrash and bash opening batsman. One day the ball goes for six, the next it flies off the top edge, straight up in the air. Unfortunately for Finch such a sequence is unusual.
Only once before in a 45-game career has he managed three consecutive scores under ten. Never before has he managed three-in-a-row under five. Sportsbook rate him at 13/2 to score between 2.5 and 6.5 runs.
What is confusing about Finch's run is that he isn't a man out of touch. Or he wasn't before the T20s started. In the Test series, he was Australia's second-highest runscorer behind Usman Khawaja (by the way, why he is not in this T20 squad?).
For a man who cops on the top-bat markets 36% of the time, prices of around 11/4 are always going to be difficult to ignore. In the last two years Finch is still topping the charts with most regularity. He has five wins in 17, a record which suggests the 11/4 is still not quite short enough.
We have to mention the form of Glenn Maxwell, the only Aussie to have shown fight so far. He has copped four times in the same period but in one game fewer. On career numbers he should be about 7/2 instead of 4s.
It could be that Finch has taken Australia's poor performances to heart and his normally fluid strokeplay has become tense. Pressure might be released with the series over. But that's guesswork. What isn't is that he should be shorter and mathematical law is hard to argue with.
Imad brilliant but not at odds
The top Pakistani bowler market is competitive. But we think the folks at Betfair Sportsbook might have the wrong favourite.
Imad Wasim has been hugely impressive in the two T20 matches so far. Opening the bowling, Imad has set the tone for his team and the opposition, inducing calm and panic respectively.
He has four wickets in the series at a cost of only 28 runs from four overs. It's a brilliant record. But a 3/1 poke he isn't. Instead, Shadab Khan catches the eye at second-favourite, priced at 10/3.
In the last two years in T20s in Asia, Hasan Ali is actually the most reliable in the market, winning twice. Hasan gets a 10/3 quote, the same price as Shadab Khan who has one win and three shared honours. By contrast, Imad has one winner, admittedly in the first T20 against Australia. Shadab dead heated with Shaheen Shah Afridi in game two with two wickets each. Afridi is 4/1.
2018 - points p-l: -0.71 (70 points staked)
2017 - points p-l: +5.29 (26 points staked)