Cricket betting tips: Agar the value as England take on Australia

Cricket
Ashton Agar
Ashton Agar

Richard Mann previews the fourth ODI between England and Australia at Durham on Thursday and expects the hosts to dominate again.

Recommended bets: 4th ODI England v Australia

2pts Ashton Agar top Australia runscorer at 12/1

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Australia have been unable to halt England's limited overs juggernaut in the series so far, losing a couple of well-contested encounters at The Oval and Cardiff before being blown away at Trent Bridge on Tuesday.

An attack shorn of Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood has suffered brutally at the hands of England's powerhouse batting line-up and conceded 481 in Nottingham.

To make matters worse for the tourists, they have also been without the batting talents of suspended duo Steve Smith and David Warner and the cracks are beginning to show.

Despite all of this, Australia can gleam some positives from the tour with Shaun Marsh once again excelling against England, his magnificent 131 in Wales keeping the visitors in the hunt before their chase faltered after his dismissal.

Another of the Australians to have impressed is all-rounder Ashton Agar, a left-arm spinner who is developing all the time and someone whose batting has seen him register scores of 40, 46 and 25 in the series so far.

Marsh and Agar will need to come to the party again if the tourists are to claim a consolation victory in Durham but in the face of this outstanding England ODI outfit, it is hard to see Australia having enough firepower to come out on top.

Shaun Marsh
Shaun Marsh and Ashton Agar have taken the fight to England

A far cry from the Test side, England's limited-overs batsmen continue to play with freedom and any amount of skill while the bowling, although a level below the batting, can boast two excellent spinners who compliment the pace of Mark Wood very well.

With the Alex Hales and Jonny Bairstow making big hundreds in Nottingham, following on from Jason Roy's century in Wales, there is a fearsome look to England's batting and Australia's inexperienced attack could be in for another tough day at the office when they travel to the north east.

As a result, quotes of 1/2 about England winning again seems fair enough but given Australia's top-order troubles, I'm happy to have a small interest on the aforementioned Agar to be the tourists' top runscorer instead.

Agar has looked one of Australia's most accomplished batsmen in the series so far and expect him to return to number seven, or possibly even six, as Australia will surely look to beef up their bowling attack following the mauling it has taken so far.

Should the top order suffer early casualties again, the likes of Glenn Maxwell, Tim Paine and Agar might be left the steady the ship once more and with Maxwell proving a law to himself at present, and Paine struggling to find his feet in the middle order, Agar could be the man to shine.

He certainly looks worth a small play at 12/1 given how well he has handled England's potent spin attack in comparison to his struggling teammates.

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