Indian Premier League preview 2009
The Razzmatazz is back! Saturday sees the second instalment of the Indian Premier League, due to security issues regarding the Indian elections the competition is being held this year in South Africa. William Hill's odds compiler Rob Dixon gives his views below.
As far as the betting is concerned, I think it's wide open. Pre-tournament favourites are Delhi Daredevils. Their top order is packed with quality, DeVilliers, Sehwag, Gambhir and the explosive Australian David Warner will lead their assault on the trophy. Bowling doesn't look too shabby either with McGrath & Maharoof leading the attack with back up from Daniel Vettori. It will take a good side to beat them.
For the first time, English centrally contracted players are available this year, Paul Collingwood will play for Delhi, Andrew Flintoff for Chennai and most interesting of all Kevin Pietersen will captain Bangalore. They play Rajasthan in their first game captained by ex-Hampshire colleague Shane Warne. Rajasthan won the tournament last year despite starting as outsiders and much will depend on how Warne gets the best out of his players as to whether they repeat the feat. They will miss the bowling of Sohail Tanvir who was the leading wicket taker last year however they have unearthed a gem in Kamran Khan, an 18 year old fast bowler who is tipped by Warne as a future star.
Of the rest of the teams, Mumbai Indians are expected to go well, Sachin Tendulkar will lead this team and with the explosive starts given by him & Sanath Jayasuriya at the top of the order, plus the all round ability of Dwayne Bravo they could challenge for the trophy.
Kings XI Punjab are struggling for bowlers currently with Sreesanth missing the tournament and Brett Lee struggling to recover from his recent injury.
Kolkata & Deccan who were both fancied last year but struggled make up the rest of the numbers. Both have world class players who can change a game in an instant but both will be striving for more consistency. I would personally pay money though to watch a Kolkata game with Brendon McCullum & Chris Gayle opening the innings!!
It promises to be five weeks of high class, enthralling cricket.
Here at William Hill we will be offering a wide range of pre-match & series markets to bet on, and with every match shown live on Setanta why not take advantage of our fantastic betlive service which will be offering up to ten in-running markets on each game
Outright - Delhi Daredevils 7/2
Top Delhi Batsman - AB De Villiers 8/1
Top Rajasthan Bowler - Siddharth Trivedi 6/1