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The Border-Gavaskar Trophy 2020/21 Series Betting Preview

Cricket IPL Betting Tips

The highly anticipated Border-Gavaskar Trophy of 2020/21 is finally upon us, and it promises to be a thrilling affair as always. The test series between India and Australia is often the most watched Test series in the world, exceeding the viewing numbers of the Ashes series between Australia and England as well, mainly due to the tremendous popularity of the sport in the Indian subcontinent, one of the most populous regions on this planet.

After Australia won the ODI series 2-1, India returned the favour by winning the T20 series comfortably, setting up a grand finale for the test series.  The series will be played with the mystical Pink Ball, which has often troubled many top batsmen of late, and it will be important to see which opening pair manages to handle it well.

Australia are the current ICC Test Championship holders with 116 points, while India are at number 3 with 114 points, which could certainly change if they manage to win another series down under. 

Schedule 

1st Border-Gavaskar Test – 17-21 December 2020, 09:30 IST, Adelaide Oval

2nd Border-Gavaskar Test – 26-30 December 2020, 09:30 IST, Melbourne Cricket Ground 

3rd Border-Gavaskar Test – 7-11 January 2020, 09:30 IST, Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG)

4th Border-Gavaskar Test – 15-19 January 2020, 09:30 IST, The Gabba, Brisbane

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History And Records

The Border-Gavaskar Trophy is the name given to the test series played between Australia and India. The trophy was named after Allan Border and Sunil Gavaskar, both former captains as well as the highest test run-scorers of their respective nations at that time. 

Before the trophy was renamed, India and Australia had faced each other in 50 test matches, with Australia winning 24 of those matches and India winning only 8, with 18 matches being drawn. 

The series was then renamed and the first Border-Gavaskar trophy was played in October 1996, with India winning the sole test match. India went on to have a better head-to-head record once the trophy was renamed, with 20 wins in 48 tests, with Australia winning 18 tests and the rest 10 being draws. 

In the most recent series in 2018/19, India recorded their first ever series win Down Under, with a historic 2-1 win to take the trophy home. 

The highest run-scorer in the Border-Gavaskar Trophy is former Indian Opener Sachin Tendulkar, who scored 3262 runs in 65 innings, at an average of 56.24, with a highest score of 241* and studded with 9 centuries and 16 half centuries. The highest scorer for Australia was Ricky Ponting, with 2555 runs in 51 innings, and his duels with Indian counterpart Saurav Ganguly were legendary. Out of the players currently playing in this series, the top scorer is Cheteshwar Pujara with 1622 runs in 29 innings, just ahead of skipper Virat Kohli who has got 1604 runs in 34 innings. 

The highest wicket-taker in the history of the Border-Gavaskar series is former Indian leggie Anil Kumble with a staggering 111 wickets in just 38 innings. Out of the current crop, the highest wicket-taker is Nathan Lyon, with 85 wickets in 34 innings, and he is also Australia’s all-time highest wicket taker in this series. Among the current Indian players Ravindra Jadeja has taken the highest number of wickets with 56 in 19 innings. 

Previous Series 

Back in 2019, Australia were without their top 3 batsmen as Smith, Bancroft and Warner were suspended following their ball-tampering controversy and thus it was widely considered that it was India’s best shot at winning their first ever series Down Under. 

  1. The first test was a thrilling contest as India set Australia a reasonable target of 322, which they almost chased down, eventually falling by 31 runs. 
  2. The second test saw Australia power their way back in to the series with a huge 146 run victory, as Nathan Lyon turned the tables with 8 wickets in the match. 
  3. The third test was one for the ages, with Pujara scoring a brilliant century and Bumrah taking 9 wickets in the match to help India record a 137 run victory and earn them their first ever series win in Australia. 
  4. The fourth test started with a lot of promise, with Pujara again earning the plaudits with a stunning innings of 193, while Rishabh Pant ably supported him with a well-made 159. India even forced Australia to follow on for the first time since 1988, and looked set to win this match before it got washed off by rain, and ended in a draw, with India winning the series 2-1. 

The former IPL star Cheteshwar Pujara was awarded the man of the series award after scoring 521 runs in the series. He was also the top scorer of the series. Jasprit Bumrah and Nathan Lyon both were the joint top wicket-takers with 21 scalps apiece. 

Team Squads

India

Virat Kohli (Captain), Mayank Agarwal, Prithvi Shaw, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane (vice-captain), Hanuma Vihari, Shubman Gill, Wriddhiman Saha (wicket-keeper), Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), Jasprit Bumrah, Mohd. Shami, Umesh Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, R. Ashwin, Mohd. Siraj

Australia

Tim Paine (c), Joe Burns, Pat Cummins, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Will Pucovski, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Sean Abbott, Moises Henriques, Marcus Harris

Predictions And Betting Picks

India won the last Test series between these two heavyweights 2-1, back in 2018/19. 2 years later Australia now have their two best batsmen, David Warner and Steven Smith back in the fold. India will be without their talismanic skipper Virat Kohli after the first as his wife, Bollywood superstar Anushka Sharma is expecting a baby, which means India will be without his services for the last 3 tests, which could be a huge factor. Let´s look at the best betting picks with odds provided by LeoVegas India.

Australia to win the series outright has odds of 1.40, meaning they are heavy favourites. The return of Steven Smith and the form of Marnus Labuschane are the two primary reasons for their position as heavy favourites. Their bowlers would be licking their lips at the prospect of bowling with searing pace using the pink ball against the likes of Prithvi Shaw, who has often struggled with the short ball.

David warner is also expected to return to the side in the second test. India will be missing Virat Kohli after the first test, and hence it is very important for him to set the tone for the rest of the series before departing the tour. They are 5.50 to win this series again, the same odds as that of a draw in this 4-match series. 

The series correct score market has some interesting options. Our bet would Australia to win this series 2-1, which has odds of 5.50 and is a probable outcome. A 4-0 whitewash in favour of the home side is at 6.00, which also can’t be ruled out. India to win this series 2-1 again, just like 2018/19, has odds of 9.00, while a 4-0 whitewash in favour of the away side is almost impossible, with odds of 51.00 ! 

The top team batsman market has the usual suspects at the top of the list. Steve Smith is the favourite to be Australia’s top batsman in this 4-match test series at 2.25, followed by Marnus Labuschane at 4.00. Openers David Warner and Joe Burns are both at 7.00 to be their team’s top scorers. In contrast, last series’ top scorer Cheteshwar Pujara is the favourite to repeat that feat at 2.75, followed by India’s openers Mayank Agarwal at 4.50 and Prithvi Shaw at 5.00. Vice-captain Ajinkya Rahane is next at 5.50. 

The top team bowler market is very interesting, with some new names in the mix. Pat Cummins is the favourite to be Australia’s top bowler in this series at 3.50, followed by his strike partner Mitchell Starc at 3.75. Nathan Lyon was the top bowler in the previous series with 21 wickets and he is also at 3.75 to repeat that feat. Jasprit Bumrah was India’s top bowler in the last Border-Gavaskar series with 21 wickets, and is again the favourite at 2.50. Fellow pacer Mohd Shami is next in line at 3.25. Veteran spinner R. Ashwin usually has a tough time in Australia, and is at 4.50 to be the top scorer. 

With Virat Kohli missing after the first test, and David Warner likely to return to the side after the first test, we believe India will only be able to win the first test, if at all, and then Australia will make a comeback in this series. We are going with a 2-1 series win for Australia this time, with Nathan Lyon their top wicket-taker and Marnus Labuschane as their top run scorer. For India we expect Mayank Agarwal to be the top scorer and Jasprit Bumrah to be the top wicket-taker.

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Akshay Malhotra

28 year old former professional cricketer at youth levels with a burning passion for sports. Experienced football writer with over 8 years of experience.