England’s Twenty20 domestic tournament, the Blast, continues at a pace and Friday night offers a real corker of a derby with Surrey hosting Kent. Read on to get an exclusive analysis and free pick for this matchup.
We cannot understand why the Blast is not more revered as a competition. It has some of the biggest stars in the world playing and is probably the most competitive ‘franchise’ league. Well, it is certainly as strong as the Big Bash in Australia.
This contest sums it up nicely. Surrey, a whopper of a club, can boast six internationals in their probable XI, although it could be seven once Kevin Pietersen becomes available. Meanwhile, Sam Curran and Mark Stoneman will probably go on to represent England.
Kent have five internationals. The most eye-catching are the New Zealand pair Jimmy Neesham and Adam Milne. Those are two very impressive overseas captures. Sam Billings, unfortunate not to be utilized more by England as a blaster, is a fantastic player while Darren Stevens is one of the best all-rounders in the country in this format.
This is good news for punters because we have two highly-competitive teams ready to and willing to give each other a bloody nose. And when the bookmakers have installed one as clear favourites, we are left with no option but to try to give them a bloody nose of their own.
Surrey are -125 with Skybook and Kent are +100 in the odds board. However, we would expect +150 to be available on Kent closer to ball one, not that we wouldn’t be happy if the former odds proved to be available across the board, with great lines available at William Hill.
We often talk here about T20 matches being terrific value and this is no different. These two teams are as good as each other and we can’t really justify short odds on the home team.
Before Thursday’s match Surrey had won two from two, making it five wins from their last ten. But Kent have shown solid form, too and they also have an even money record over their last ten games.
The New Zealand axis makes them extremely dangerous in our opinion and they did well to beat a well-crafted and competitive Essex team in their last match.
Of course, we cannot disrespect Surrey. Aaron Finch, the Aussie, is a fearsome hitter and the death bowling of Tom Curran is fast becoming revered. Don’t forget Ravi Rampaul, either, a solid tier from the Caribbean.
It’s just that they don’t rate value at the odds so they have to be taken on. If you analyze games with a keen eye for player talent and disregard the showbiz names, you will consistently win money on T20.