Bookmakers have been lazy in framing their markets on the One Day International series between Bangladesh and England, the first of three matches taking place in Dhaka on Friday.
Bangladesh is capable of the odd shocker – for example, last month it lost by two wickets to Afghanistan in Dhaka – but the Tigers have been victorious in 17 of their last 20 One Day International home games, losing single matches to Afghanistan, India and South Africa. Bangladesh has won six One Day International home series in a row, vanquishing Zimbabwe 5-0, Pakistan 3-0, India 2-1, South Africa 2-1, Zimbabwe 3-0 and, most recently, Afghanistan 2-1.
According to the International Cricket Council One Day International Rankings, Bangladesh is seventh on a 95 rating compared to England’s fifth on a 107 rating. Such is the advantage of playing at home in international cricket that, based on the aforementioned rankings alone, it is possible to make a strong case for England being a false favourite. But there are several other reasons for opposing England.
First, there is the head-to-head One Day International record between Bangladesh and England. Bangladesh has won three of its last four One Day International games against England, only one of which took place in the Asian nation. Bangladesh beat England by 15 runs when the Tigers and the Three Lions, Mohammad Mahmudullah scoring 103 runs before being run out as the underdogs posted a target that the favourites could not chase down at the Adelaide Oval.
Second, England has lost each of its last three One Day International matches played on foreign soil and its most recent One Day International series on the subcontinent resulted in a 2-5 loss to Sri Lanka. Indeed, England has lost each of its last three One Day International series that it has contested on the subcontinent – 0-5 to India, 2-3 to India and, as one mentioned above, 2-5 to Sri Lanka.
And third, England has travelled to Bangladesh without, among others, Alex Hales, Eoin Morgan and Joe Root. Hales and Morgan elected to stay at home due to concerns about security in Bangladesh, while Root is having a well earned rest. Hales holds the England record for highest One Day International score, Morgan is England’s captain and Root is England’s highest ranked batsman. England is lucky in that it does have able replacements for Hales, Morgan and Root but the Three Lions are unable to field their best side.
Bangladesh is a legitimate cricket team these days and that is particularly true in the One Day International format on home soil. Bangladesh boasts sufficient strength in depth across both its batting and bowling ranks that the Tigers have no obvious weaknesses and England has not had much opportunity to get used to Bangladeshi conditions.
At odds of +205 with 888Sport and Unibet, there is no doubt whatsoever that Bangladesh is overpriced to win its One Day International series versus England. But even more attractive is the odds of +200 with Bet365 that Bangladesh wins the first One Day International of the short series.
Bangladesh to win the One Day Series
Starts Friday 7th October, 09:30 GMT
Bangladesh to win the first One Day International
Friday 7th October, 09:30 GMT