Sports

Top Favorites of World Cup 2019

As of May 24, four teams stand as clear favorites to reach the semifinals by finishing in the top four of the group stages.

Along with their average futures market odds, they are as follows:

England (+200 to win)

England stands as the favorites to win this tournament, even though the nation’s best finish as a ICC World Cup host is as runner-up finish (in 1979). England’s standing as the outright favorites on the futures list is backed by the fact that June 2017 marks the nation’s last ODI series defeat.

Flat pitches, which provide lower levels of bounce and lateral motion, are where England thrive best, with those types of surfaces affording them greater license to focus on their main game plan, which is to outscore the opposition.

India (+300)

Despite losing the crown in 2015, India has gone from strength to strength. In the build-up to this World Cup in England, they have beaten every major rival in at least one series. Although 2019 has brought mixed results for the Indian team, they boast one of the best captains around with Virat Kohli on course to break several international records.

India stands as second favorites to England in the long list, but not by a considerable distance.

Australia (+375)

Despite being crowned as 2015 world champions, it has been difficult for the Australian team to regain its former glory since the 2018 ball-tampering scandal that led to Steve Smith and David Warner being banned from cricket for 12 months.

Naturally, there was a decline in the absence of the five-time world champions’ two most influential players, but they return as good as ever. Without them, Australia hardly stands a prayer of winning the World Cup on English soil.

South Africa (+900)

Along with New Zealand, the South Africans are perhaps the last real contenders before the futures prices start to reach drastic lengths.

They will be underestimated at the peril of better teams though, and in the previous World Cup, famously set an immense target of 298 for eventual finalists New Zealand. However, that was still not enough and heartbreak ensued.

Openers Hashim Amla and Quinton de Kock are in great form ahead of the World Cup, and if any spinners can effectively study the batting methods of fellow favorites, South Africa could easily be the surprise package of 2019.

Top 3 batsmen (odds to be top batsman)

  1. Virat Kohli (+900)

As of May 2019, captain Virat Kohli is the world’s top-ranked ODI and test batsman, scoring the highest number of runs since the end of the 2015 World Cup, scoring a stunning tally of 19 centuries in that time.

  1. Joe Root (+1500)

Currently ranked fourth in test batting, and fourth in ODI batting rankings (according to the ICC player rankings), JoeRoot provides the driving force in the latter stages of matches, with his reliability and consistency at an all-time high ahead of the World Cup.

  1. David Warner (+1500)

The returning Australian star, David Warner, currently ranks sixth in the ICC’s long list of test format batsmen. Only this year, he ended the IPL season as Sunrisers Hyderabad’s top scorer with 692 runs (69.2) on average.

Top 3 bowlers (odds to be top bowler)

  1. Jasprit Bumrah (+1500)

India has a long and proud tradition of uncompromising fast bowling, with Jasprit Bumrah able to bowl consistently at over 145 kph. He is also a real expert at delivering the most deceptive of inswinging yorkers.

  1. Adil Rashid (+1700)

In the bowling department, Adil Rashid is a vital asset to the England side, with the ability to deliver an effective googly consistently, with a spin either way for an added element of unpredictability.

  1. Mitchell Starc (+1700)

A huge force of destruction for Australia, left-arm bowler Mitchell Starc was integral to his nation’s triumph in the 2015 World Cup. Starc also holds the record (albeit a disputed one) for the fastest-ever delivery in a test match and throws with comfortable consistency at around 150 kph.