Sri Lanka could spoil Mumbai party
Saturday morning's World Cup final is set to be a cracker when the two best teams in the tournament meet in Mumbai.
Co-hosts Sri Lanka and India have certainly made the best of their home conditions throughout the competition and after 48 matches the cream has risen to the top. Both came through their semi-finals fairly comfortably, India beating their old rivals Pakistan and Sri Lanka overpowering New Zealand.
India will have the advantage of a home crowd and conditions in Mumbai and that reflects in the match prices, India are 8/13, Sri Lanka 11/8.
Sri Lanka were runners up in 2007 losing out to Australia in the final and will be looking to go one better this time around. It will be the final international game of the glittering career Muttiah Muralitharan, the 38 year old is troubled by an injury but will play through the pain. If you fancy a sentimental bet on him to be the man of the match for his last game in Sri Lankan colours you can back him at a generous looking 10/1.
He wasn't fully fit during the semi-final against the Kiwis but still managed to bowl his full allocation of ten overs, taking two wickets in the process including with his final ball on home soil when he dismissed Scott Styris. We have a special bet on him to take a wicket with his final delivery at odds of 14/1. That would include bowling out the final batsman so could provide some value.
If you fancy him to be the star of show as he was so often during his career he can be backed at 14/1 to take a five wicket haul.
In the batting department Dilshan has been in top nick for Sri Lanka scoring a century in their win over England followed up by 73 against New Zealand and he will be seen as the prize wicket for the Indian bowlers.
His partnership with Malinga is firing and after hitting 231 together in a ten wicket win against England both should be full of confidence. It's 11/2 they can get an opening partnership of 100 or more and 25/1 that both men hit centuries.
The cricket mad Indian fans will be relishing the chance to watch their team lift a World Cup on home soil. An estimated TV audience of over 1 billion watched their win over Pakistan in the semi-final. The biggest crowd pleaser of them all, Sachin Tendulkar, will be desperate to make his mark on this match. He is 5/1 to score a century. If you want some insurance on missing out on a big innings from the little master you can back him to be out for a duck at 14/1.
Some bad news for the Indians is that Ashnish Nehra will miss the match with a broken finger. Ashwin is likely to replace him and he is a pretty handy bowler himself and was impressive in his two appearances so far in the tournament. He is 5/1 to be the top wicket taker in the in Sri Lankan innings.
We have a number of special bets for this match, you can bet on the outcome of the first ball bowled, the odds ranging from 8/13 for a dot ball to 50/1 for six. The neutral will be hoping the game goes down to the final over of the chasing teams innings. That is 4/1.
The toss could be crucial, it's 8/11 that the team that wins the toss wins the match, evens that they lose.
I think this one could certainly go either way but India will be under massive pressure on home soil and that could work to the advantage of Sri Lanka. They provide better value at 11/8. If Lasith Malinga is at his best he can often be unplayable. Add to that the Murali factor and a bet on Sri Lanka is certainly worthwhile . I would also advise a small wager on Malinga to be man of the match at 10/1.
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