A Bet On England’s Next Captain; Sports Or Novelty Betting?

Alastair Cook

Next England Captain

• Kevin Pietersen – 200/1
• Eoin Morgan – 50/1
• Joe Buttler – 25/1
• Ben Duckett – 25/1
• Keaton Jennings – 22/1
• Ian Bell – 20/1
• Ben Stokes – 18/1
• J. Anderson – 18/1
• Stuart Broad – 14/1
• J. Bairstow – 12/1
• Joe Root – 1/50

A dismal performance in India sees Alastair Cook stand down from leading England’s test cricket side, a team he wants to remain in, opening up the books on who will replace him, but this rare occasion when the worlds of sports and novelty betting graze each other just highlights how UK gambling culture is still, despite the efforts of Bet365 and co, a less than inclusive place for women.

Many who like to bet on sports in the UK openly sneer at novelty betting. This is partly because they consider it beneath them, or think it silly and frivolous, but mostly they sneer because novelty betting has gained the sort of social acceptance that sports and casino betting can only dream about. Place a bet on who’ll win in the English Premier League on Saturday and you’ve got a vice, bet on the winner of Big Brother or this series of The Voice and you’re just joining in with a bit of fun. They feel it unfair.

This, of course, serves them right. The inherently sexist UK gambling culture has meant that seeing a woman in the average bookmakers on the high street was as likely as finding Germaine Greer at a Islamic State council meeting. Sure, women were allowed to bet on the horses at the track, the Queen does it, but beyond that? No. Gambling ladies were very much the exception in the UK until the advent of Bet365 and the far more inclusive and welcoming world of novelty betting became available.

Is Novelty Betting Perfect For Busy People?

Novelty betting is dismissed by a lot of male gamblers as lacking any real skill, there are no stats to crunch, no past performances to analyze, it’s too random for them. Naturally this is precisely what makes it attractive to women who’ll take advantage of UK gambling laws to bet on I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here but not the EPL or Six Nations. Women have better things to do than remember team and player stats, last season’s results or league standings and frankly they worry about men who don’t.

Perhaps then it is just as well that these two worlds very rarely collide, and whilst betting on who’ll be the next to captain England’s test cricket side might not be top of every novelty betting fan’s agenda this weekend, it is going to be every bit as bizarre as gambling on the next James Bond or Doctor Who, and there will be quite a few cricket wager aficionados having a punt on it too. The question is then; Who is up for this prestigious place on the team and will lead England to numerous defeats this summer?

Will You Bet On The Next England Captain At Bet365?

The bookies, like Bet365 , seem to think it is already in the bag for Joe Root. Most sports bettors will think this then is a poor opportunity with odds so short on that favorite they make Donald Trump’s fingers look long, however novelty betting veterans will eye the odds on Joe Root, currently just 1/50 and wonder if he won’t come a cropper on the way (a few tabloid revelations might sink his chances with the England selectors for instance) leaving one of the other candidates to take the captaincy.

So perhaps it’ll be Jonathan Bairstow at 10/1 or Stuart Broad at 14/1? Could it be Ben Stokes or James Anderson both at 18/1 or the 20/1 shot of Ian Bell? Bookies like Bet365 even offer odds on Kevin Pietersen leading the side, although at 200/1 you’d have to be barking mad (just like Kevin Pietersen is) to consider it. No one in the UK gambling news headlines will be of Kev leading the England test side out this summer should be allowed near sharp objects however much they enjoy novelty betting or test cricket.

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