Image source: Dun.can – Flickr
Slow to arrive at the T20 party, the ECB has put a massive bet on The Hundred 2020 being quirky enough to differentiate itself amid the crowd and win new fans to short-form cricket. Whether that wager pays off remains to be seen, but regardless of the ECB’s possibly folly there will be a series either way and the bookies like Bet365, one of the best online sportsbook sites in the UK these days, are already offering odds on the eight new teams yet to play a game in anger.
There will always be arguments as to whether a draft or auction is a better way to do things, but were you to ask the TV producers you can just bet they’d go for the latter, the former dragging on for hours with all the hoopla of a tax inspection. This is a bit of a shame since the ECB have bet on The Hundred 2020 to rival the tournaments in India, Australia and the Caribbean, and thus far it hasn’t had anywhere close to the same razzmatazz as any of them. So English, so awfully dull.
- London Spirit – 8/1
- Manchester Originals – 8/1
- Birmingham Phoenix – 6/1
- Welsh Fire – 6/1
- Trent Rockets – 11/2
- Northern Superchargers – 11/2
- Oval Invincibles – 11/2
- Southern Brave – 9/2
The big surprise that emerged from the first ever draft was the failure of Chris Gayle to secure a place on any of the teams, perhaps pricing himself a little too high for a tournament that has still yet to prove itself a success. Still, he wasn’t alone. Lasith Malinga also put himself out of contention and those who enjoy a bet on sports in the UK will have to choose a team without these giants of the game when they place a bet on the Hundred 2020, and it’s about time they do.
New Format May Fly Or Fall Next Summer
The debate over the value of spinners vs seamers will continue right through the tournament itself but there are going to be teams leaning heavily on the hard to read spin bowlers to provide an less predictable attack than mere speed alone will provide. The Oval Invincibles in particular could well live up to their name if a ten ball over gives them even more time to find the weaknesses of the man on strike. Indeed if nothing else you can bet on The Hundred 2020 to be fascinating.
The change in format does place more emphasis on sustained attack, and with players deemed too expensive the draft might not have won any prizes for drama, but it has manifestly set up a hard fought tournament the players are already taking very seriously. This at least saves fans from a money grab farce next summer, but for those who’ll take advantage of UK gambling laws to put a bet on The Hundred 2020, it does mean there are a couple of teams looking better than the rest.
Whilst the London Spirit and Manchester Originals languish at 8/1 after not doing quite as well with their line ups as the others, the Birmingham Phoenix made some good late choices and, along with the Welsh Fire who are bit Aussie heavy, get 6/1. This only just puts them behind the Trent Rockets and Northern Superchargers who are a 11/2 bet on The Hundred 2020 at bookies like Bet365 right now. However, two teams stand head and shoulders above the rest.
New Hundred Ball Game
- 8 Teams
- 100 Balls Per Innings
- 10 Balls Per Over
- Bowling 5 or 10 Per Stint
- 20 Balls Max Per Bowler
- 25 Ball Powerplay
- Page Playoff System
The Oval Invincibles also get around 11/2 at bookies like Bet365, one of the best online betting sites in the UK at present, but with Jason Roy, Sam Billings and Sunil Narine in the squad look a damn good bet on cricket next summer. Or at least they would if it weren’t for the Southern Brave, who snagged Andre Russell, David Warner and Shadab Khan in the draft, who are getting 9/2 and are thus perhaps, at this early stage, the best bet on The Hundred 2020 you can make.