Alastair Cook is putting the final preparations to his first series as England Test skipper and he could have barely had to start with anything tougher than a trip to the sub-continent to face India.
England are 4/1 to win the series and the King of Stats hopes to provide some other opportunities to make some money from the cricket.
5 – In the last six Test series between the pair in India, the hosts have won the opening game on five occasions, with the other a draw. India are 11/8 to take a 1-0 lead in Ahmedabad here.
6 – England have been first at the crease in the opening Test of the last six Test series against India. Whoever wins the toss in Ahmedabad will logically bat first with the wicket likely to deteriorate and so backing England at 1/1 to win the toss could interest some.
3 – Cook has scored a half century at all three grounds he has played at in India, two of which he has batted just two innings. This is his first trip to the Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad and Cook is 5/4 to score at least 50 in the first innings.
50 – Virat Kohli has scored at least 50 in all of his last five innings in Test matches in India and averages over 50 against England in one-day cricket. Kohli is 7/2 to be India’s top runscorer in the first Test with England.
1 – England have won just a solitary match across their last four Test series in India, losing six of the other ten games. This indicates that India to win this four-Test series 2-0 has some appeal at 5/1.
5 – In India’s last home series, Ravichandran Ashwin bowled in four innings against New Zealand and took at least five wickets in three of them. With England expected to struggle against spin, 7/1 looks a big price that Ashwin registers another five-wicket haul in the first innings of the first Test.
40 – Graeme Swann’s bowling average is worse against India than all other Test-playing nations. His total average of 29.59 dips to 40.24 against the Indians. This suggests that Ashwin can win the battle of the spinners competition in the first Test by taking the most wickets at 11/10.
2 – Stuart Broad has been England’s top wicket-taker in each of England’s Test series’ so far in 2012, against the West Indies and South Africa. Broad has been struggling with a bruised heel ahead of the first Test with India, but is expected to be passed fit. He is a tempting 4/1 to be England’s leading wicket-taker in the series.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date