Ed Hawkins peruses the side markets for the decider in Centurion and fears the England opener could be demoted...
"Back to Buttler, briefly. He is rated at 11/4 for a half-century. Considering the Centurion is the first of the series which has a justified reputation for runs, it might be a follow"
Sportsbook have priced up top batsman and top bowler pairs and for the last hurrah of the series a couple of prices leap out for punters keen on a nibble at big prices.
The two-year data is pretty slim for both teams. But combining what we know long term and short term there could be some wagers that fit the bill.
Jos Buttler and Chris Jordan are rated at 12/1 for the double. Buttler, who is just shy of an even money chance on hit rate as an opener across internationals and leagues, could be considered overdue on that basis. At 12/5 for top England bat on his own he remains value. The worry is whether England decide to unleash Tom Banton or Dawid Malan after the Lancashire man's two failures.
Jordan has looked expert at the death, picking up cheap wickets. Bowling at the end of an innings is something of a must for top bowlers wagers. On two-year form he is bang on 3/1. So the 7/2 stand alone is a cracker.
We're also keeping our fingers crossed that Mark Wood, who is also showing skills in the final balls, gets a rest. England are keen to protect him from injury and three games in such a short sdpace of time could trigger a niggle. A Buttler-Wood combination is 11/1. Jason Roy, two tops so far, and Jordan/Wood is 13/1 and 12/1 respectively.
Tom Curran, who defended 15 off the final over at Durban, is 12/1 and 13/1 respectively to double up with Buttler and Roy.
Quinton de Kock and Lungi Ngidi are a combined 10/1. Perhaps by the time of the World Cup these two are going to have long enough study periods to not be ignore on stand alone wagers.
Back to Buttler, briefly. He is rated at 11/4 for a half-century. Considering the Centurion is the first of the series which has a justified reputation for runs, it might be a follow. On flat wickets taking the price for a fifty can be smarter as it takes away the fretting about what others could do.
England started this series at 5/6 jollies on the sixes match bet. They end it as 11/10 outsiders following successive 'defeats' in East London and Durban.
The per game averages, which gave England a two sixes lead, have proved fruitless. Still, the loss at Kingsmead was extraordinarily hard to take. They smashed 13 in the first dig and the win seemed a formality at the break. But not for long. The bet was on its way down after just the first eight overs with De Kock striking eight out of the park.
Despite the reverses, we will keep faith with England's six appeal. Recency bias has shifted them out and we prefer longer numbers to make decisions on.
England last two years top bat wins/matches
England last two years top bowler top bowler wins/matches
Jordan 4 3t/16
T Curran 2 3t/11
S Curran t/5
SA last two years top bowler wins/matches
Phehlukwayo 3 2t/16
Ngidi 2 2t/6
Hendricks 1 t/6
SA last two years top bat wins/matches
De Kock 4/9
Du Plessis 2/5
R Hendricks 2/13
Van Der Dussen 1/11
2020 - points p-l: -9.27 (16.5 points staked)
2019 - points p-l: +30.25 (133 points staked)
2018 - points p-l: +9.86 (89 points staked)
2017 - points p-l: +5.29 (26 points staked)