Back Black Caps And Windies Openers To Fail Again

Corey AndersonNew Zealand all-rounder Corey Anderson stole the Third One Day International headline with his record-breaking century but not before both the Black Caps and the West Indies had disappointing opening partnerships for the umpteenth time.

Anderson cracked the fastest ton in One Day International history, blasting a century off 36 balls to delete Shahid Afridi from the record books. Anderson ended up unbeaten on 131 runs from 47 deliveries, hitting six fours and 14 sixes in what was an innings of a lifetime. Anderson is likely to become an instant millionaire when the next Indian Premier League auction takes place and good luck to him for that.

New Zealand bashed 283 runs for the loss of four wickets in its 21 overs after inclement weather reduced the Third One Day International’s playing time. The West Indies was beaten before it came out to bat and understandably so having been subjected to not one but two assaults. New Zealand opener Jesse Ryder hit 104 runs off 51 balls, including 12 fours and five sixes, playing second fiddle to Anderson. The West Indies made 124 runs for five wickets in a game that was as good as over three deliveries into the away team’s reply. That was when Johnson Charles fell for a three-ball duck.

None of the West Indies top four scored more than 17 runs and the away side was 19 runs for three wickets after four overs. But the West Indies was not the only team to have batting problems. While Anderson and Ryder scored tons, New Zealand opener Martin Guptill went inside the second over of the home side’s innings for one run and Ross Taylor did not fare much better, recording nine runs off eight deliveries.

Ladbrokes is offering odds of 1.83 that New Zealand’s first wicket in the Fourth One Day International falls before the Black Caps go over the Magic Sign’s 28-and-a-half run line. And Ladbrokes has set the West Indies opening partnership bar at 25 and a half runs and it is inviting punters to go either under or over at odds of 1.83 as well. One thinks that the value lies in opposing both opening pairings.

So far in the One Day International series between New Zealand and the West Indies there have been four opening partnerships for totals of zero runs, two runs and five runs (twice). It would take a brave punter to bet on either New Zealand or the West Indies getting off to a strong start.

Saxton Oval in Nelson will be the venue for the Fourth One Day International and, unfortunately, punters do not have a large amount of stadium-specific data over which to pore. That is because Saxton Oval is about to make its men’s international bow and even men’s domestic numbers are relatively thin on the ground. Saxton Oval opened in 2010 and, since then, the Nelson facility has staged two men’s One Day games and eight men’s Twenty20 matches.

It is a bit hard to take Twenty20 statistics seriously but at least there are One Day numbers that support the under plays outlined above. The opening partnerships in the two One Day games have totalled zero runs, five runs, 33 runs and 40 runs. In the first match the team batting first was one run for two wickets at one point, while in the second game the side batting second was five runs for two wickets as it tried in vain to chase its victory target of 323 runs.

New Zealand is available at odds of 1.44 with Ladbrokes to win the Fourth One Day International but there is a saying about bad teams at bad odds that springs to mind. New Zealand merits favouritism but the Black Caps are not ideal short-priced favourites so stick to the exotics.

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