Edgbaston - 3rd-7th August 2016
A crushing 330-run victory at Lords saw England draw level in the series, with Pakistan unable to back up their impressive performance in the first Test. Coming into Edgbaston, the market has England as firm favourites at 1.6, with the draw and Pakistan priced similarly at 5.2 and 5.3 respectively.
Both previous Tests in this series have been won by the side who won the toss, and with these two sides, I don't expect this to be any different. Pakistan have a bowling attack able to defend average scores, but a bowling attack that struggles to put pressure on sides batting first. With this in mind, the toss becomes huge here, and whoever wins it should find themselves in a really strong position in this Test. This is going to inform the majority of my trading strategy here, and I'll be looking for opportunities to back the side winning the toss.
England have made one change for this Test, bringing in Steve Finn for the injured Ben Stokes, where Pakistan are yet to announce their team. This makes England's bowling attack Anderson, Broad, Woakes, Finn and Ali. With Finn struggling for rhythm this summer, and Broad turning in extremely underwhelming performances so far this series, this attack looks a little toothless to me. Pakistan batting first should heap pressure on this bowling attack, who could struggle to pick up wickets, and if this is the case, the 5.3 on Pakistan will steam in and offer a great trading opportunity. Broad needs to be opposed as well, as he looks like he's forgotten how to bowl, so i'm selling his performance points here.
Pre-off bets are tough to pick out here with the toss being so important in determining the direction of this match. Should England bat first, the new ball bowling of Pakistan will offer plenty of run scoring opportunities early on, and Cook especially has been cashing in. So far this series, England have scored 32, 37, 17 and 13 runs at the five-over mark, and I'll be keeping a very close eye on the line for this bracket. This means there's also likely to be value in backing overs, or buying runs, for England's established batsmen.
Trading Notes: Expect the side who win the toss to go on to win the match, look for opportunities to back them. Expect England to get off to a fast start
Sell Stuart Broad Performance Points at 106 with SportingIndex