Headingley hosts the third and decisive One Day International between India and England this Tuesday. Just like the T20 series, this has been well-fought and balanced, and gone down to the final match.

Maybe this is a sign the powers that be are leaning towards more balanced tours, splitting ODIs and T20s evenly.

Spin has been the key in each of the matches. It was Kuldeep Yadav in the first match, but Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid did it for England on Saturday. The pair went for a mere 80 runs in their 20 overs combined, picking up three wickets in the process.

When Moeen dismissed Virat Kohli, the balance shifted drastically towards England and the tourists were never able to wrestle it back.

That’s not to forget Kuldeep’s three wickets, of course. The leg spinner still tormented England briefly, but as much through fortunate as skill.

Jonny Bairstow was astoundingly unlucky, while Jason Roy will get away with that shot 99% of the time. Kuldeep is still decent value at 3/1 to the match’s top bowler.

Headingley is traditionally a fast bowler’s surface. It won’t be a greentop for this one, thanks to this Californian summer we are enjoying in the United Kingdom at the moment.

Changes of pace and accuracy from Liam Plunkett will still be as effective as ever, though, just as we saw at the weekend. Plunkett picked up four wickets, including the massive scalp of Lokesh Rahul. He’s still out at 7/1 to take the top bowler honours.

Despite being dismissed early on after struggling against David Willey, Rohit Sharma is still one of the standout names in the top batsman market. At 11/2, Rohit is joint favourite with his skipper Kohli.

England, like many a bowling attack worldwide, have shown an inability to stop the opener when he gets going. If he gets off to a good start, another century could be on the cards.

The potential for an Indian counter-attack in the middle order makes Suresh Raina an intriguing bet at 16/1. Raina is a superb talent.

Should England have a good powerplay again, Raina will have time to build an innings, and we all know he has the capability to be a real game changer in the latter overs.

After his man of the match knock, Joe Root has to be worth a bet at 13/2 to top score. My pick would be for Root at 9/1 to win man of the match again though.

Having been in a slump by his high standards, Root took complete control in the middle after a couple of quick England wickets. Amidst the fireworks of white ball cricket, it was a reminder that there’s always a place for the very best batsmen in any format.

Splitting the two teams is almost impossible, just as the odds suggest. England to hit more sixes at 10/11 is again worth backing, such is the power throughout the hosts’ order.

Picking either team to win is as good as a flick of a coin for this one. The opening partnership and boundary markets are a better option.


*Odds subject to change - correct at time of writing*

About the Author
Sam Cox

Sam is a freelance sports writer, specializing in football, cricket and Formula One.

He follows most sports, but particularly enjoys those on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean – namely baseball, basketball and American football. Watching, writing and talking about sport takes up most of his time, whether that is for a day out at T20 Finals Day or settling down for Super Sunday and Redzone.

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