STAR PREVIEW: England v Pakistan with Ryan Sidebottom

Hopefully not a case of beginners luck but the lads at the Star trading desk have added up the scores on the doors and the recommendations for England v South Africa notched up a profit of 7.84 points. Hope you did well !

Ben Stokes was phenomenal and THAT catch. I’ve seen plenty of great catches over the years and it’s always hard to place it in the pantheon of history but let’s just leave it at this…. it was RIGHT up there.

It got the fans going even more and capped a terrific opening game for England. I thought they played well disciplined cricket. It would have been easy with all that pressure on them to go all gung-ho – but 311 was a very solid score given the wicket and I thought they then bowled brilliantly as well.

Top marks but it’s a marathon not a sprint and all that and the show moves on to Trent Bridge on Monday as England face a Pakistan side that were brushed aside by the West Indies.

I made the case for the West Indies in my ante-post preview and still think that if there is going to be a surprise team it will be them. They have flair, experience, top spinners and bat all the way down. have England as hot favourites which can be expected but Pakistan are capable of causing England problems if playing to their best and putting the West Indies defeat quickly behind them.

I fully expect more runs at Trent Bridge than the Oval and I’m hoping England’s 311 first match tally will extend to something like 380-400 here.

I’ve had a good look at the markets and like the look of Jos Buttler to be England’s top run scorer at 11/2. He blasted a 50-ball century against Pakistan in a ODI last month.

Jofra Archer to be England’s top wicket taker appeals at 7/2 with He should be buoyed by his three for 27 at the Oval.

For Pakistan Imam-ul-Haq has played well in the warm-ups and at 7/2 can be their top run scorer whilst the ever reliable Shadab Khan stands out at 3/1 to be top wicket taker for Pakistan.

I’m expecting plenty of runs from England so in the match bets recommend being over 37.5 runs for England’s first wicket at 5/6 and over 7.5 match sixes for England at 4/6.

RECOMMENDED BETS (scale of 1-100 points)
BACK JOS BUTTLER (Top England Run Scorer) 4pts at 11/2 with
BACK JOFRA ARCHER (Top England Wicket Taker) 3pts at 7/2 with
BACK IMAM-UL-HAQ (Top Pakistan Run Scorer) 3pts at 7/2 with
BACK SHADAB KHAN (Top Pakistan Wicket Taker) 3pts at 3/1 with
BACK ENGLAND FIRST WICKET (over 37.5 runs) 7pts at 5/6 with
BACK ENGLAND MATCH SIXES (over 7.5) 7pts at 4/6 with

PROFIT/LOSS SINCE JAN 1 2017: PROFIT 213.68 points
(excluding Cricket World Cup ante-post, Memorial golf)