Experienced campaigner Peter Siddle was always going to be there or thereabouts in the leading Australian Ashes series wicket taker market, but Ryan Harris’ performance at Lord’s marks him out as a challenger to take very seriously on that front.
Three-series Ashes veteran Siddle looked the sensible bet at the prices before hostilities began and duly began filling his satchel at Trent Bridge with plenty of swing around on the first couple of days.
He ended that contest with the lion’s share of his series scalp total, adding just three more victims at Lord’s in the second Test.
Harris was overlooked for the first Test in favour of Mitchell Starc, but preferred to the Sydney leftie at Lord’s he made up for lost time in no uncertain fashion, taking 5/72 in the first innings and adding two more wickets when the hosts returned to the crease a second time.
That heroic effort leaves him four wickets short of Siddle at the top of the Aussie series charts, and level with the now-sidelined James Pattinson.
Starc is next in the standings on five scalps, but having been omitted at the ‘home of cricket’ he’s far from guaranteed a recall, with the likes of Jackson Bird hungry for action.
Siddle (8/11) will continue to take wickets and whilst catching him in the Aussie series wicket taker standing won’t be a stroll for Harris, he’s worth backing to overhaul his baggy green mucker at 5/2.
The ball swung a good deal less at Lord’s and it was Harris who was more able to adapt to conditions to find wickets – using the track’s famous slope to great effect – despite it being his first Test match in England.
His Lord’s exertions were his fifth and sixth innings against the hosts – having bowled in four innings on home soil during the whitewash series of 2010/11 – and he boasts comfortably the best runs-per-wicket average and strike rate of any Aussie bowler against England in the past five years.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.