Hawkeye on England v New Zealand Second Test: Pope to convert in front of the faithful

Kane Williamson
Kane is out

Ed Hawkins finds three wagers on the side markets for the deciding action from Edgbaston on Thursday...

"Pope is giving us almost seven points on implied probability and he looked in decent touch in the first game"

(1pt) Back Ollie Pope top England first-innings runscorer at 6.05/1

England v New Zealand
Thursday 10 June, 11:00
TV: live on Sky Sports

Beware Anderson trap

Edgbaston is renowned as England's fortress. It's their answer to Australia's relationship with The Gabba. The pitch suits their strengths perfectly. They are roared on by partisan support.

But the old magic might be in short supply for game two. A seaming and swinging surface will be manna from heaven for a highly-skilled New Zealand attack which boasts three artists (Tim Southee, Trent Boult and Kyle Jamieson) to England's two. The grand old wizards James Anderson an Stuart Broad.

With England's best bowler at Lord's (Ollie Robinson) suspended, it stands to reason that many will reckon Anderson and Broad have little to beat on the top first-innings bowler market. They are 5/2 joint favourites with Betfair Sportsbook. On the data below, neither rate a bet.

But it is worth filtering those results to home Tests only. After all, Anderson and Broad are far more potent in England than they are in, say, India. Alas, there's no edge there, either. Anderson has six wins (one at Edgbaston) in 25 in the last five years, Broad five in 31.

It's a shame because the duo have terrific records at the ground. Anderson takes a wicket every 38.9 balls and Broad every 44. That difference between the two might be enough to justify a wager on the basis Anderson should be clear jolly. And that's fine. For us, though, we do need an edge on actual win rates.

England top bowl wins/matches (t = ties)
Anderson 10 6t/45
Broad 9 9t/52
Bess 3/10
Leach 0/12
Archer 2 1t/13

Anderson is still likely to prove a popular wager for man of the match because of his superb record at the venue and the likelihood that a seaming and swinging pitch will assist him.

Sportsbook go 10/1. But is it value? He has won only eight match awards in his 161-game career, a statistic which reinforces the bias towards batsmen because of his undoubted skill. None of them, however, have come at Edgbaston.

Stuart Broad, who is also 10/1, has ten wins in his 141 Tests. And none at Edgbaston, either.

For the record, Trent Boult will probably be a fancy on the same rationale. He has just two wins in 71 Tests. But the 9/1 on offer is mean in the extreme.

England top bat wins/matches
Root 10/59
Pope 4/18
Burns 4/24
Sibley 0/19
Crawley 4/13
Stokes 10/45

Two England bets we are keen on are Ollie Pope at 5/1 for top first-innings bat and Zak Crawley to score a fifty at 2/1. Pope is giving us almost seven points on implied probability and he looked in decent touch in the first game. Crawley not so much but there's 2.3% for us for him to half-salute.

Williamson boost

There's little doing on the tops markets for the Kiwis. Indeed, there's not a single edge on top runscorer with every player overrated.

But that wass until you factored in Sportsbook's generous offer of price-boosting Kane Williamson to 3/1. That gave us an edge of almost six points. TAlas he has been ruled out through injury.

As discussed in our match preview, we're also happy to take the 40/1 about Kyle Jamieson topping. It's a bet based on eye, reckoning Jamieson is a player who, in time, will be going off at half the price. He's also worth a nibble at 3/1 for top bowler.

NZ top batsman wins/matches
Williamson 9/29
Watling 2/29
Taylor 3/29
Latham 6/31
Nicholls 4/30
Southee 1/25
Jamieson 0/7

NZ top bowler wins/matches (t = ties)
Southee 8 2t/25
Boult 5/25
Wagner 7 2t/26
Henry 1/8
Jamieson 3 2t/7

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