BOXING DAY TEST – AUSTRALIA v NEW ZEALAND
Australia have a 1-0 advantage over New Zealand after recording a commanding victory in the first Test of the Series at Optus Stadium.
Mitchell Starc was outstanding with the ball for Australia claiming match figures of 9-97 while Marnus Labuschagne continued his hot run of form with the bat with 143 in the first innings and another 50 in the second innings.
Heading in to the second Test Australia go in as the warm favourites and appear awfully hard to beat. The $1.28 on offer is short but can be included in multis.
Looking for some novelty plays and given the fact he is the hot batsman in the lineup right now I am happy to have something on Marnus Labuschagne at the $4 to be the leading run scorer for the Aussies in the first innings.
I still rate Kane Williamson as the premier batsman in the New Zealand outfit and will back him at $3 to be their leading runscorer in the first innings.
Mitch Starc is in the zone and can be entertained as the leading wicket taker for Australia in the first innings at $3.20.
Tomorrow sees a double header in the Big Bash with the Sydney Thunder taking on the Adelaide Strikers in the first clash while the Perth Scorchers have their first home match of the campaign when they do battle with the Melbourne Renegades at Optus Stadium on Saturday night.
Early on in the tournament it is tricky to get a form line on different teams but it is fair to say the Perth Scorchers were most disappointing in their first up loss to the Sydney Sixers.
The Scorchers were off to a horror start with the bat and never looked like making a competitive total.
Accordingly I will opt for the Renegades at $1.80 as an option as a leg of some Saturday multis.
Looking for novelty plays in both matches I will be backing Usman Khawaja to be the leading scorer for the Thunder at $2.75 and Alex Carey to be the leading run scorer for the Strikers at $3.70.
Rashid Khan is one of the finest short format bowlers in world cricket and he is the logical play in most wickets markets for the Strikers at $3.
In the Renegades v Scorchers clash I have backed Shaun Marsh in the most runs Renegades market at $3.20 and Ashton Turner at $5 to top score for the Scorchers.
The Perth Wildcats are in a rich vein of form winning their last 4 straight matches and they play host to Melbourne United in a marquee match-up on Saturday night.
With the benefit of home court advantage I will side with the Wildcats to make it 5 in a row at $1.48.
My NBL multi for this week requires Perth to beat Melbourne, Adelaide to beat Illawarra and Sydney to defeat Brisbane. The multi price is $2.43.
The Perth Glory have won their last two matches and are starting to finally put some momentum in to their season.
I’ll take a multi with the Glory to win in to Melbourne City to win which is paying $3.01.
My EPL multi for this week requires Wolverhampton, Manchester City and Tottenham to all prevail this round. The multi quote is $3.79.
My best racing bets of the weekend are as follows
Flemington Saturday Race 7 Number 5 Yulong January (TABtouch Fixed Odds Price $2.10) : Is chasing a winning hat-trick after wins at Pakenham and Ballarat and has an excellent record over this distance where he has had 6 tries for 3 wins and a placing. Well drawn and in nicely with just 54.5 kilograms. Very hard to stop.
Flemington Saturday Race 8 Number 2 Sure Knee (TABtouch Fixed Odds Price $2.40) : Handy mare who is racing well with a win and a placing at her last couple. Loves racing over this trip where she has had 7 tries for 2 wins and 4 placings and after 5 tries at this venue has managed 2 wins and 2 seconds. This looks very suitable.
Randwick Saturday Race 8 Number 12 Romani Girl (TABtouch Fixed Odds Price $8.50) : Has won two races this preparation and is well suited with just 53.5 kilograms and the plum draw in barrier 1. Plenty to like about her here and appears a super each way bet at the prices on offer.
Ascot Saturday Race 8 Number 5 Regal Power (TABtouch Fixed Odds Price $2.00) : Railway Stakes winner who wasn’t far away in the Kingston Town Classic last start. Is the class runner of this Group 2 event and with even luck in running should prove too good for them. Looks a nice multi banker.
Mandurah Friday Race 4 Number 1 Consortium (TABtouch Fixed Odds Price Not Available) : Has a great record off box one where he has had 4 starts for 4 wins. Other nice bets on the program look to be 6-3 New Echo, 8-1 Always The Bride and 11-1 Go Danno Go.