After England’s 2-1 victory in the four match Test series the two sides play a five match One Day International series beginning on Wednesday 3rd February
The schedule of games is as follows:
· Wed Feb 3: 13:30 1st ODI – South Africa v England Mangaung Oval, Bloemfontein Day/Night
· Sat Feb 6: 10:00 2nd ODI – South Africa v England St George’s Park, Port Elizabeth
· Tue Feb 9: 13:30 3rd ODI – South Africa v England SuperSport Park, CenturionDay/Night
· Fri Feb 12: 13:30 4th ODI – South Africa v England New Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg Day/Night
· Sun Feb 14: 10:00 5th ODI – South Africa v England Newlands, Cape Town
In the ICC World rankings for one day International sides South Africa are 3rd and England 6th and this promises to be a closely fought series.
That this is the case owes much to a transformed England approach to ODIs. Only a year ago the side was eliminated from the group stages of the World Cup in Australasia, followed by a disappointing result on the tour of the West Indies.
In this format England had failed to move with the times, new regulations demanding a more aggressive batting approach. This changed with the appointment of a new coach in the summer and a new team selection policy going for youth from the swathe of talented players in domestic cricket in the ODI and T20 formats.
Results since have been encouraging, losing 3-2 to the Australians at the end of the Ashes tour and then winning against Pakistan 3-1 at the end of the UAE tour.
The squad for this series supplements Test players such as Joe Root, Ben Stokes and Jonny Bairstow with some of the brightest world ODI talent including opening batsman Jason Roy, Captain Eoin Morgan, spinner Adil Rashid and all-rounder David Willey. The England ODI team has rebuilt quickly, around a much younger core that is likely to be competitive in every series for the foreseeable future.
For South Africa, the continued absence of Dale Steyn through injury is a blow but the team does contain several world class ODI players. In De Villiers and Amla South Africa include 2 of the 3 top ranking ODI batsmen in their ranks. The team will also include players experienced in the ODI format around the world including the IPL such as JP Duminy and David Miller. Youngsters such as the hugely impressive Kagiso Rabada are also developing fast but without Steyn, Philander and Abbott injured and with Rabada likely to be rested at times in this series the South African bowling line up may be vulnerable..
For the series as a whole BetVictor price as follows
South Africa 1 to 2
England 13 to 8
With 8/11 and 11/10 available for the first game in Bloemfontein on Wednesday 3rd.
Undoubtedly South Africa are favourites at home in this format but the value price for the series is undoubtedly England with their more modern aggressive approach with the bat likely to suit good conditions, fast outfields and small-ish grounds.
Series correct score prices, again with BetVictor have South Africa 3-2 at 15/8 and England 3-2 at 5/2. I do think it is likely to be 3-2 either way
My suggestions are as follows (BetVictor)
England to win the ODI series at 13/8
England to win the ODI series 3-2 at 5/2