T20 World Cup Betting Preview: New Zealand's Odds Look Too Big

Scott SlocombeAnalyst IIIFebruary 8, 2014

WELLINGTON, NEW ZEALAND - JANUARY 31:  Ross Taylor of New Zealand celebrates his century during Game 5 of the men's one day international between New Zealand and India at Westpac Stadium on January 31, 2014 in Wellington, New Zealand.  (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
Phil Walter/Getty Images

The ICC T20 World Cup starts on 16 March and I think I've found a decent ante-post bet for punters seeking an interest.

If you take a look at the betting market for the T20 World Cup winner according to Oddschecker, then consider the form teams going into the event, you'll notice a large disparity.

New Zealand are currently available at 12-1 and that price looks too big for such an open tournament.

The Black Caps will arrive in Bangladesh having beaten the West Indies 2-0 in a January T20 series and more recently flayed India 4-0 in ODIs. Home advantage is, of course, an obvious help, but there's something about the manner of New Zealand's deconstruction of both the current T20 and ODI world champions that will give punters food for thought when contemplating a bet on next month's tournament.

This New Zealand team looks full of confidence, typified by the recent form of Ross Taylor.

What a difference a year makes. Having been unceremoniously stripped of the limited-overs captaincy in December 2012, he returned for the T20 series against England in February 2013 and looked nothing short of shell-shocked, compiling scores of 13, 4 and 6.

Twelve months down the line and Taylor has returned to the kind of destructive form he's always possessed. Back-to-back centuries in the final two ODIs against India will give him and the team immense confidence going to Bangladesh.

New Zealand will also be pleased with Martin Guptill's recent run of games, not so much because of the runs he's scored but because he seems to have overcome the injury issues that plagued his 2013 campaign. Guptil has a T20 average of 34.11 and at the top of the order, his brutal hitting can take the game away from the opponents. 

The middle order of Brendon McCullum, Ross Taylor and Corey Anderson looks very strong. McCullum is one of the best players in the world, especially in the shortened format, and is always capable of a game-changing innings. Anderson, despite his relative inexperience, looks useful with bat and ball.

There's strength in New Zealand's bowling attack, too. In Tim Southee and Mitchell McClenaghan, they possess real pace and provided they can get their lengths right, they're sure to pose a threat to any batting attack. They'll get hit for their fair share of runs, but both are genuine wicket takers, an invaluable commodity in T20 cricket.

They also have one of the world's best T20 bowlers in Nathan McCullum, currently third in the ICC world rankings. A good spinner is key to a successful T20 side and McCullum not only provides regular wickets, with a strike rate of 18.1, but conservatism, too. With an economy rate of just 6.85, he'll allow the quicks a little more freedom to bowl wicket-taking deliveries.

Another tick in the right box is the Black Caps' recent experience of playing in Bangladesh. They won their sole T20 against the hosts in Dhaka on 6 November last year, scoring 204 in the process, and despite losing the following ODI series 3-0, the recent experience of playing conditions in Bangladesh can only be beneficial.

Any of the top eight teams in the world can beat each other on their day, and I'm not suggesting New Zealand are the "good things" of tournament, but the 12-1 about them is too big in my view and a very decent each-way price.

Boylesports.com offer the most attractive place terms right now, going 1/2 odds on the first two places.

When the captains go out to toss the coin on 6 April for the final of the ICC T20 World Cup, hopefully we'll already be sitting on a winner.


Suggested Bet: New Zealand 12-1 e/w with Boylesports.com to win ICC T20 World Cup