Our Pick South Africa are favourites to win
After their one-off ODIs against Ireland, South Africa and Australia are now ready for the real deal - a head-to-head battle in the five-match one-day international series. The series gets underway with the first match to be played on September 30 at the SuperSport Park, Centurion. Live action will begin at 1:30 PM local time. Both teams will be without some of their key members and the battle could go down to the wire.
Read on for our betting tips and match prediction for South Africa vs Australia 1st ODI...
The pitch at the SuperSport Park is generally very good for batting with nice bounce and carry. The ball comes nicely onto the bat and spinners don't often enjoy bowling here. Also, the outfield is pretty fast which means we could certainly have a high scoring game on Friday.
300+ have been scored 16 times at this ground which includes the first-innings scores of the previous four games. The highest successful chase here is 319. So the team that bats first will look to get 300-plus, which won't be easy for the opposition to chase under lights.
South Africa went on to win their last three matches here despite losing the toss. So winning the toss should tip the scales in their favor even more.
Predicted Score: Around 325
Earlier, it was allrounder Chris Morris who was ruled out due to injury and now star batsman AB de Villiers has also been deemed unfit for the entire series. This is going to affect their batting which will now be relying primarily upon Hashim Amla, Quinton de Kock and stand-in skipper Faf du Plessis. de Kock has two hundreds in his four matches at this ground and is coming off a fantastic knock of 82 against Ireland. We, therefore, expect him to top-score for South Africa. Amla has four hundreds and a fifty here and if he too is able to fire, the hosts should reach the predicted score.
Australia have rested Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood while James Faulkner, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins and James Pattinson are all injured and won't be available for this series. This leaves John Hastings and Scott Boland as the senior-most frontline pace bowlers in their side. South African batsmen will surely try to take maximum advantage of Australia's inexperienced seam attack. Adam Zampa finished with 3-37 against Ireland, but since spinners have not done well at this ground in the past, we feel Hastings who has taken 35 ODI wickets for Australia could emerge as their top bowler.
Predicted Score: Around 300
Except Shaun Marsh who will have to sit out due to injury, Australia will have nearly all of their firepower when it comes to batting. David Warner, skipper Steven Smith and George Bailey are all amongst the runs and the visitors should get to 300 or more if these three bat to their potential. Bailey was the highest run-scorer in the Sri Lanka ODI series and going by his current form, he could top-score for Australia in this match. What remains to be seen is whether Aaron Finch will be brought in place of Usman Khawaja who made an unbeaten 82 against Ireland.
The South African pace attack will be devoid of Morne Morkel and Chris Morris. Kagiso Rabada, Aaron Phangiso and Wayne Parnell are likely to feature in the playing XI along with Dale Steyn who will be playing an ODI for his country after almost a year. Steyn had a great test series against New Zealand and he had also created a lot of problems for the Australian batters in the 2011/12 home ODI series. Imran Tahir has been doing a good job with the ball, but we feel that Dale Steyn could be their top bowler as the pitch at the SuperSport Park is one of the quicker ones to be found in South Africa.
South Africa and Australia have met 91 times in one-day internationals in the past with the latter leading the win-loss stat by 47-40. Three of these games have resulted in a tie while one did not produce a result.
Both teams have won four games each in their last eight face-offs on South African soil. At the SuperSport Park, the two teams have faced each other in six ODIs and the scores are levelled here with both winning three games each.
Australia are the current World Champions in 50-overs cricket and their recent performances give a clear indication that they have been playing like one. After winning the World Cup at home, they have defeated teams including England, New Zealand and Sri Lanka in ODI bilateral series away from home. However, the biggest concern for them is going to be the huge amount of inexperience in their bowling attack due to the absence of several frontline bowlers.
South Africa, at home, have been very impressive over the past two years or so. They have not lost an ODI series since 2014 with wins in their last four series against India, West Indies, New Zealand and England. And although they have been hit with the loss of de Villiers and Morris, they still have plenty of strong batsmen in their line-up who could expose the inexperience in this Australian seam attack.
Australia have a slightly higher win percentage in ODIs than South Africa. But we feel that the latter, who have the home advantage in their favor, have a better chance to win this opening game of the five-match series.
Risk Free Bet
The $25 free play is good on your FIRST ever bet placed in SportsBetting's new Player Props software. There is a 6x (six time) rollover requirement associated with your $25.00 free play. Full T&C Apply
begambleaware | 18+ T&C* aaply
#1 Online Cricket Betting Site