England v Ireland Second ODI Tips: Underdogs could be a back-to-lay opportunity

Willey was excellent
David Willey

Ed Hawkins says the visitors need to bat first and hit England with spin at the Ageas Bowl on Saturday...

"Ireland’s opportunity for traction is likely to come from the pitch. If it gets slower and tackier they could use spin to squeeze England in a chase"

England v Ireland
Saturday 1 August 14:00
TV: live on Sky Sports

England cosy

England didn't win in the style of 1/9 shots in the first ODI at the Ageas Bowl on Thursday. But there was never any doubt that they wouldn't recover from 79 for four to chase a meagre 173.

David Willey, with five wickets, had pretty much ended hopes of a contest. When he reduced the Irish to 28 for five the game resembled a quarantine tea break instead of a 100-over battle.

Willey, heartbroken at missing out on the World Cup squad last year, dovetailed well with Saqib Mahmood who extracted decent pace and bounce.

With the bat, England looked rusty as you would expect. Their style is attacking recklessness and this doesn't suit long lay-offs. James Vince looked a million bucks for 25. Then got out. Some things never change. Sam Billing's unbeaten 67 gives him a chance to nail down a regular spot.

Probable XI Roy, Bairstow, Vince, Banton, Billings, Morgan, Ali, T Curran, Rashid, Willey, Mahmood

Ireland disappoint

Ireland were indebted to debutant Curtis Campher who hit an unbeaten half-century on debut and a quick 40 from Andy McBrine. Without those contributions they would have been humiliated.

Things had gone awry from the first over with Paul Stirling's awkward clip to midwicket. And when their best two batsmen were back in the hutch after Andrew Balbirnie's feather behind 150 looked beyond them.

Although they claimed four England wickets they never managed a squeeze of any sort. Boyd Rankin must surely come into bolster the ranks after BJ McCarthy's injury. Josh Little is another option. Mark Adair has already been ruled out.

Possible XI P Stirling, G Delaney, A Balbirnie, H Tector, K O'Brien, L Tucker, C Campher, S Singh, A McBrine, C Young, B Rankin

Pitch could get sticky

We expect the Ageas Bowl pitch to get slower as this three-game series progresses. They are using the same strip for each game. That rather dents confidence that England will be capable of approaching something in the region of 400.

Previously the surface had a reputation for runs. Before the World Cup, 300 had been breached five times in eight. It was a different story in the tournament, though - one team busted 250 in four matches. The average score was 231. The runs per over average was 4.7, down from 5.3 in all matches.

Although Ireland batted poorly, it looked like the World Cup wicket rather than the one that preceded it.

Risky trade

England are shorter than they were for the first match and that can be no surprise considering how disappointing Ireland were with the bat. They are no better than 1.081/12 at present.

Can we make a case for a trade on the Irish, then? Possibly although it comes with the caveat that you may have to accept that you never actually get the chance to trade it.

Ireland's opportunity for traction is likely to come from the pitch. If it gets slower and tackier they could use spin to squeeze England in a chase. This has been England's Achilles' heel. McBrine and Simi Singh will have to bowl much better while Gareth Delany will need more overs. Not to mention an extra 100 runs on the board.

If all of that happens then it is possible that Ireland's price might be chopped in half from 12.50.

England for 400?

There are few Betfair Sportsbook specials which help to bring life to another uncompetitive affair. The first price that leaps from the coupon is the 10/11 that England win, hit the most sixes, have the highest opening partnership and highest first 15 over score.

Another is the even money that Ireland score 199 runs or less. The 8/1 that England bust 400 or more will be popular although we're not sure the pitch helps. England will, of course, have to bat first, too.


The golden rules of trading an ODI on Cricket...Only Bettor

Ed Hawkins P-L

2020: -7.55
2019: +37.25pts
2018: +23.53pts
2017: +12pts
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. Includes Hawk-Eye stats column p-l

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