Australia Favorite to Regain Coveted AshesPublished November 10, 2010
Ricky Ponting, Shane Watson lead odds in individual player betting.
Australian cricket has taken a hit in recent times, first losing the Ashes to England away from home last year and then slipping to fifth in the ICC test rankings after an ordinary run of results in 2010.
But all that should change this summer, with the team starting as favorite to regain cricket's biggest honor on home soil.
British bookmaker William Hill has Australia starting the series as a 4/5 favorite to win outright, compared to England, 7/4. A drawn series, which would mean England retains The Ashes, is paying 5/1.
Captain Ricky Ponting and vice-captain Michael Clarke are the key men for Australia in this series, and they are paying 7/2 and 4/1 respectively to be top batsman for Australia in the series. All-rounder Shane Watson is level with Ponting at 7/4.
Ponting is 8/11 to win his head-to-head series battle with England's star batsman Andrew Strauss, evens. The form of those two batsmen will go a long way towards deciding the result of the entire series.
Queenslander Mitchell Johnson is a 9/4 favorite to take the most wickets for Australia, followed closely by Ben Hilfenhaus and Doug Bollinger, 7/2, and Peter Siddle 9/2.
The second test in Adelaide and the fifth test in Sydney are shaping up as the most exciting, with those two venues sharing 2/1 odds on hosting the highest-scoring match.
The series begins with the first test in Brisbane, starting November 25.