Seddon Park in Hamilton has a reputation as a result pitch that assists seam bowlers so back New Zealand to win its Third Test versus the West Indies and clinch the series.
Only a combination of Brendon McCullum’s poor captaincy – the New Zealand skipper made a mistake in enforcing the follow on as the Black Caps bowlers ended up bowling 224 consecutive overs – and Darren Bravo’s brilliant batting – the West Indies number three scored 218 runs off 416 balls over 572 minutes – prevented the home team from winning the rain-interrupted First Test at Dunedin’s University Oval.
But not even McCullum’s decision to enforce the follow on in the Second Test – a call that had the potential to backfire and caused a degree of consternation among New Zealand fans – could stop the Black Caps from triumphing at Wellington’s Basin Reserve by an inning and 73 runs inside three days.
Basin Reserve staff served up a green top but it did not prevent New Zealand scoring 441 runs in its first innings before the Black Caps dismissed the West Indies for 193 runs and 175 runs in the away side’s two knocks. The bottom line is that the West Indies does not have the bowling attack to take 20 wickets in Kiwi conditions and most of the Windies batsmen are incapable of playing against a seaming ball.
The West Indies has not won a single Test match away from the Caribbean against a side other than Bangladesh since getting the better of South Africa by 128 runs in Port Elizabeth six years ago. That 22-game winless streak comprises nine draws and 13 losses. And, if anything, the West Indies is getting worse with every passing match. The West Indies was the powerhouse of international cricket when most of its current players were in nappies. Today the West Indies is totally unrecognisable from the days when Gordon Greenidge, Michael Holding and Viv Richards to name just three stars were representing the multi-national team.
New Zealand is odds on across the board to defeat the West Indies in the Third Test, with Unibet offering the best odds of 1.72 about a home win. The Meteorological Service of New Zealand’s medium-term weather forecast for Hamilton predicts that the first four scheduled days of the game will be pretty much rain free with the fifth day, if required, likely to be interrupted by showers. The outlook is insufficiently grim to back the draw and then there are the recent results of Test matches at Seddon Park.
Each of the last six Test games in Hamilton has produced a positive outcome. New Zealand beat England by 189 runs in 2008. India defeated New Zealand by 10 wickets in 2009. New Zealand got the better of Bangladesh by 121 runs in 2010. Australia smashed New Zealand by 176 runs, also in 2010. Pakistan thumped New Zealand by 10 wickets in 2011. And South Africa battered New Zealand by nine wickets in 2012.
With regards to Third Test exotics, Trent Boult and Tim Southee carved up the West Indies in Wellington and there is no reason to abandon them in New Zealand top bowler betting in Hamilton. Boult took 10 wickets and Southee snared five wickets in the Second Test, with Boult being New Zealand’s top bowler in both of the West Indies’s innings. One can back Boult at odds of 4.00 with Betfred to be New Zealand’s top bowler in the away side’s first dig and Winner has the same odds about Southee. Dutching Boult and Southee at odds of 4.00 apiece equates to a dutched bet at odds of 2.00. On the basis of the series so far, the history of Test matches at Seddon Park and the reported pitch conditions – there is a tinge of green on the deck – that looks like a good play.