Ed Hawkins reveals five key betting strategies for the IPL - including why Chennai are value for the title...
"Delhi are a meaner bowling unit, Chennai can clear the ropes more often. One suspects that the latter is of greater value on trickier batting surfaces"
KL Rahul was the top-rated top runscorer performer in the last two years before the restart. But his win percentage has dipped slightly after two blanks to 36.6%. he retains his No 1 spot for the moment although Rutuaj Gaikwad will surpass him once he breaks then ten-game qualification. With no sign that Rahul is out of nick, it's time to start showing some faith.
Rahul should be available at the 5/2 mark (28.6% implied probability) so the mark-up is with the punter. In Punjab's next game he comes up against Mumbai Indians. He has a fantastic record against them.
In 13 matches he averages a massive 71 so there is no fear that match-ups will work against him. Rahul has taken an unbeaten century and 94 off them. It could be wise to also play him for top match runscorer from the 9/2 mark as well.
The same strategy is value against Bangalore. He averages 94 against them and has an insane strike rate of 156.
Big-priced batters to follow
One the subject of top-bat bets, we don't need to be always betting the batter with the highest win percentage. Indeed, Shikhar Dhawan has been a favourite for a while but the oddsmen no longer give us an edge on price.
What is key is taking a batter who has a better win rate than his odds suggest. One recent example includes Rahul Tewatia who had a two-year mark of around 10% but we were able to bet them at 19s.
Who else can we take at chunky numbers?
Well, Andre Russell has been underrated so far. His win rate of 15.3% means that prices of 17/2 - as he was for their game against Bangalore - was giving up almost five points. Other potentials include Sam Curran at anything better than 14s, Marcus Stoinis from 10s for Delhi, Deepak Hooda likewise for Sunrisers and team-mate Priyam Garg from 15/1. Garg can give it a biff but we would expect him to be priced starting in the 30s.
Filter runs strategy
Making the innings runs numbers pay can be tricky in a tournament spread across so few venues. It's a Covid reality that we have to get to grips with.
In the past, an IPL would be awash with opportunity to deploy a reliable strategy. Expect big runs in the death overs. Taking whopping numbers for 40 or 50 in the last three wouldn't need to come off that often for hefty returns.
But we have to be cannier on surfaces that look like getting lower and slower. The numbers below should help. The batting run rates at the death throw up at least one surprise: look how Mumbai have struggled.
With their lower-order power they would have been a go-to choice for this type of wager. Not any more. So filter for Chennai and Delhi.
Batting run rates at death
Super Kings 13.6
Delhi Capitals 11.3
Who has six appeal?
Some ricks are beginning to creep into the sixes match-bet markets. This is often a market priced up on reputation rather than record. The former is exploded in the numbers below.
Check out Delhi. The Capitals will go off favourite against every team bar Chennai or Mumbai so are worth taking on to be outmuscled. We note how Rajasthan are outsiders against Sunrisers on Monday.
Chennai should also provide stand-out value. The market could well be a choice affair when they come up against Mumbai and Delhi. Prices of no shorter than 8/11 against the weak teams could also pay. Bangalore are another outfit to be betting against with a poor return and a reliably stodgy opening pair in Virat Kohli and Dev Paddikal.
Sixes per game IPL 2021
Chennai the value
Any analyst worth his or her salt in T20 franchise cricket will tell you that they key metric for success is six-hitting. West Indies dominance in the world stage is built on it. An undervalued Birmingham franchise made it to the final of the inaugural The Hundred by belting most sixes. The Patriots won the CPL the same way.
So there is a clear edge on the outright market. Delhi are favourites at 3.2011/5 to win the tournament. But on those sixes numbers above shouldn't Chennai be the jollies instead of 3.309/4?
It could depend on what you value more. Delhi are a meaner bowling unit, Chennai can clear the ropes more often. One suspects that the latter is of greater value on trickier batting surfaces.
Ed Hawkins P-L
Based only on available prices. Does not include back-to-lay in-running advice or commission rate. Figures 2013-2016 on 1pt level stakes. Includes Hawk-Eye column p-l