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Betting preview for 1st Test ENG v WI at Edgbaston

As my colleague Paul has posted an excellent preview of the series as a whole, I've picked out a couple of bets for the First Test starting today, being of course the first day-night Test to be played in England.

The first and also the last? We'll see. Like many I'm unconvinced that this is going to work, nonetheless it's worth a try. Surely the pink ball is going to help the bowlers and I'm looking at a couple of bets bearing that in mind. First of all I make no apology for going back to the well of No Hundred In The Match. Surprisingly to me the price here is only a tick underneath what it was when I backed it in a couple of the SA tests. You can have 7.5 (13/2) on No Hundred being scored in this match. I'd be shocked if any of the WI bats took this away from us. Cook and Root are always in play for England, but it could prove more difficult for Stokes, Bairstow or Moeen to deny us here as even if one gets in England could well be bowled out before they make it. It's also entirely possible that England will only bat once, or have a low target in the second innings.

I'm also bullish about Anderson and Broad in these conditions, and while I wouldn't put anyone off Broad's Player Performance – Over 110.5 at 1.83 (5/6) – I'm going with Jimmy Over 105.5 also at 1.83 (5/6). That's working off 20 points for a wicket, 10 for a catch and 1 for a run. Five wickets and a catch would take us over the line, and I'm expecting Jimmy to top that more often than not here.

In any case, join us from 2pm today for this historic Test!

Recommended bets

No Hundred in the Match, 5 pts @ 7.50 (13/2)

Anderson Player Performance Over 105.5, 10 pts @ 1.83 (5/6)


ENG v WI, Test series betting preview, August 17th – September 11th

A three-Test series against an under-strength West Indies side isn't usually the sort of thing to set the pulse racing. But this time, we have the day-nighter at Edgbaston to get our juices flowing. Don't know about you but I haven't been this excited about pink-ball action in Birmingham since Jimmy White beat Kirk Stevens in the 1986 Pot Black final.

England are understandably strong favourites to come out on top and West Indies languish near the bottom of the Test rankings, only Zimbabwe and an improving Bangladesh beneath them. I fully expected to be tipping up 3-0 England. However, on checking the odds, I'm less keen. 4/6 for that eventuality is too skinny for me, given the number of unknowable variables (the first day-night Test in this country, the weather, England's fragile/callow batting line-up etc). So I'd swerve it, if I were you. In fact, if you can find a way to back against that result, that's probably a cannier bet and should be around the 11/10 mark.

Joe Root scored for this column when he was easily England's top batter in the South Africa series. So it's somewhat surprising that he's available at the same price (9/4) to repeat the feat against the Windies. Wouldn't put anyone off having a dabble.

For the visitors, skipper Jason Holder could be set for a big series with the ball. He's not as quick as some of his team-mates but he can nibble it around, especially in late-summer English conditions (and, one would imagine, under lights at Edgbaston), and took three wickets in the final warm-up game against Derbyshire. He's a very fair 5/1 to be top wicket-taker for his side.

So there we have it. Revel in cricket's latest innovation/freakshow and if you're having a punt ... gooood luck.

Recommended series bets

Not to end 3-0 England (if you can find it) Should be 11/10

Joe Root top England batsman 9/4

Jason Holder top West Indies bowler 5/1

All prices correct at time of writing.

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