- England v South Africa
- Vitality IT20 series, first match (of three)
- Wednesday July 27, 2022, 6.30pm
- The Seat Unique Stadium, Bristol
It is difficult to work out whether England’s home schedule of limited overs matches has been a marathon or a sprint. It feels like a marathon with the weight of games, but all 12 of their home fixtures have been crammed in between July 5 and 31.
This opening T20 fixture in Bristol is the 10th of those 12.
Previously, England have played two one-day international series against India and South Africa, plus a T20 series against India on home soil, and they are yet to win one.
They were of course denied the chance to beat South Africa in the ODI series by rain in Leeds on Sunday, with the decider washed out.
With a T20 World Cup coming up in Australia at the end of the year, this series is of significant importance for both sides.
England are stronger despite recent form.
England have played two T20 series this year; away in the West Indies and at home to India. They have lost them both.
South Africa, meanwhile, are unbeaten in four away series dating back to the middle of last year, winning three and drawing in India earlier this year.
That still doesn’t convince me to take South Africa for the series win, but I can see them winning a game. I quite like the 6/4 bet365 have on England to win 2-1 correct score. That would be my selection.
Buttler due a score, de Kock to continue Headingley heroics
Jos Buttler’s form across nine limited overs internationals - eight innings - through July has been scratchy. He has posted a high score of 60 and only one other score about 20.
That is due to change. I quite like the 13/8 Betfair Sportsbook are offering through their #OddsOnThat selections on him and Quinton de Kock to hit a four and a six apiece at Bristol.
Now de Kock was in absolutely sparkling form in the Headingley ODI which got washed out on Sunday, hitting a scintillating 92 not out before the weather intervened.
I think this has every chance of landing.
Richard to bring Glee(son) to punters by continuing recent form
Lancashire fast bowler Richard Gleeson looks overpriced by Betfred at 9/2 to be England’s top wicket-taker in the game at Bristol. This price stands out.
They have him as sixth favourite in the market behind Reece Topley, Adil Rashid, Chris Jordan, David Willey and Sam Curran. A quick scan of other firms such as bet365, Betfair and Ladbrokes and he is around the 7/2 mark with them.
Bet365 have him as their joint second favourite.
Gleeson is in excellent form. He claimed four wickets in two T20s against India, including a 3-15, and was the leading wicket-taker in this summer’s Vitality Blast with 25 from 16 games, including a best of 5-33.
* Odds correct at the time of writing. Subject to changes.