This has not been an easy set of games to deal with. In the Test series, it was a little easier to predict who would be the team to fall apart. One game aside, it was usually a clueless India side. In the ODI’s, it’s been England who have lacked any real game plan, and India have capitalised.
Helped by several flat England performances, MS Dhoni’s men have looked refreshed in recent weeks, and they can wrap up a straight forward series win if they’re triumphant in the fourth ODI on Tuesday.
Bookmakers are generally making India the favourites, but Stan James have gone to extremes in pricing India at 1.72, with Bet365 making England a best price of 2.00. India are best priced 1.85 with Boylesports.
It’s been a terrible two years for England, and it feels like it’s been a terrible forever as far as India go in playing test matches away from home. After the test victorys, England have gone back to resembling the side that looked lost in the Ashes. India, who still aren’t great, are playing the attacking cricket that was lacking during the test series.
A six wicket victory secured India a 2-0 lead after the third ODI, and a win on Tuesday wraps up the series. A 2-2 draw is still a possibility, and hosts England will want to avoid a whitewash and salvage some pride by bouncing back over the next two meetings.
England’s batting was the main issue on the weekend, as no one passed the 50 mark. It gave the bowlers little chance and in the ODI format, 227 was never going to be enough. India secured their victory with seven overs remaining.
We shouldn’t totally discredit England and ignore what India of done. England are indeed facing a team that are the ODI kings, having swept up in recent competitions, but it should be said England looked completely lost against a decent spin attack on a pitch that didn’t offer that much additional spin.
There are plenty of people out there who believe that England’s problems will never subside as long as Alastair Cook is captain. I’m not sure it’s that black and white, but we know Cook will be the man that leads England in to the World Cup.
Cook has been putting up positive partnerships with Alex Hales at the top of the order, but England completely failed to build on an 80-1 start on Saturday. Instead, a complete collapse followed, with no aggression shown towards an India bowling line-up that was clearly struggling to find a rhythm early on.
That lack of aggression cost England and summed up their mental state in this series. The loss would have done nothing to improve that, and now India will probably tie this series up.
Back India to win at 1.85 with Boylesports
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