England v New Zealand 1st Test betting tips, predictions & preview at Lord’s

The first home Test of the season for England begins at Lord’s on May 21 as they take on New Zealand. The England v New Zealand 1st Test betting tips can be found below.

Story so far:

Result:

England have won the first Test by 124 runs and taken a 1-0 lead over New Zealand. On the final day of the Test, England were bowled out for 478, leaving New Zealand to score a highly improbable 345 for a win from around 75 overs. New Zealand slumped to 0 for two and despite BJ Watling and Corey Anderson’s partnership, were bowled out for 220 with about nine overs to spare.

The second Test begins on May 29 at Leeds.

Day Four Update:

England turned the first Test around on its head through some excellent batting from Alastair Cook and Ben Stokes. Both hammered centuries, but it was Stokes’ counter-attacking effort that not only took England to the realms of safety but also now gives them a good chance to try and set the game up for  win.

At stumps on the fourth day, England had gone ahead by 293 runs with Cook (153) and Moeen Ali still at the crease. If England can bat a session and push that up to around 375 by then, they could look at a declaration that will lead to an exciting last two sessions.

As things stand now, a draw is the most favourite bet at 4/11 (bet365) while an England win stands at 7/2 (Paddy Power). For New Zealand to win this, they will need to overcome heavy odds of 12/1 (Betway).

Day Three Update:

New Zealand pushed their first innings score up to more than 500 and were bowled out with a lead of 134 runs in their first innings. Kane Williamson was their best batsman with a century to his name while there were contributions all the way down the order. In their second innings, England lost Adam Lyth for 12 and then saw Gary Ballance getting bowled for a duck to leave them gasping at 25 for two. Alastair Cook and Ian Bell saw them through to 74 for two by stumps.

What that means is that at this stage, New Zealand are overwhelming favourites to win the Test at 8/11 (SkyBet) as opposed to a draw, which is at 23/10 (Paddy Power). An England win looks a distant second at 6/1 with Unibet, which like the first day are rather long odds for an England win at this stage. I expect them to shorten a tad and if you can take advantage of it, then it could get to be a very profitable Test for you.

Day Two update:

As I had pointed out yesterday, New Zealand were too long at 6/1 to win the Test yesterday. If you had put your money on New Zealand on them at 6/1, now would be a good time to cash out by putting your money on both, an English win (8/1 with Ladbrokes) and a drawn game (9/5 at 888Sport) from here on.

Because not only did New Zealand bowl England out for 389 early on the second day, they also managed to pile up 303 for two by stumps on the second day. First there were fifties for Martin Guptill and Tom Latham, and then Kane Williamson showed his class with an unbeaten 92 in his 155-run stand for the third wicket with Ross Taylor.

Where does that leave you if you had put, say £10 on a Kiwi win after the first day, is this. Put £6 on an England win & £20 for a drawn game. If New Zealand win from here, you would have gotten £60 for that win and lost £16 for a cool profit for £34.

Similarly for a drawn game, you will win £20 while for an English victory, the profit comes out to be £18!

Day One update:

New Zealand looked like they had taken the right decision by electing to field first when England slumped to 30/4 at one stage in the first session. All their top four batsmen were gone, leaving Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler and Moeen Ali to lead the fightback.

Both Root and Stokes fell in their 90s after being involved in a 161-run stand for the fifth wicket, while Buttler made 67 before getting out to the last ball of the day.

By the time play ended, England were 354 for seven from their 90 overs, having moved to a position of great strength. However, while it’s no surprise to see that while England are 5/6 to win this Test, to have New Zealand at 6/1 with Unibet is almost a shocker.

Take the current offer at 6/1 and one can be rest assured there will be times when England will move to offer more than evens to win the game at which stage try to hedge your bet there. A draw looks slightly difficult given how result-oriented this pitch usually is.

Preview:

England’s cup of woes overflowed a long time back. Now, it’s about picking up the pieces and attempting to get back to where they think they belong but with so much going on in the background, it’s never easy.

If the Kevin Pietersen issue hogged the limelight last season, Colin Graves and Andrew Strauss managed to mess it up even further by sending out different signals this season. Graves said Pietersen could play a part in England cricket if he scored a lot of runs, Strauss said his career was over in the short-term because there were trust issues.

As a result, when England go into this Test series against New Zealand, they are favourites but only by a small margin. A lot of that will obviously be down to two other reasons too though.

One, England are coming off a poor showing in the West Indies. The pitches in West Indies cannot be compared with those back home at Lord’s and Leeds where the two Tests will be played but surely they could have held on to a series win. A 1-1 draw following comments from Graves that West Indies were a mediocre team will make it tougher for them

The second reason is that New Zealand themselves aren’t any pushovers. Under Brendon McCullum and Mike Hesson they have blossomed into an amazing unit that not only made the final of the 2015 World Cup but also have improved by leaps and bounds in Test match cricket.

Since losing their last Test series in 2013 – incidentally against England – New Zealand have played in six Test series, won four and drawn two of them. This, by far, will be their toughest challenge.

England’s 12-man squad has Adam Lyth and Mark Wood, two first-timers, but for now it looks like only one of them will make their debut this game. Lyth will open the innings with Alastair Cook following the retirement of Jonathon Trott while Wood, a seamer, could fight for a spot in the team with Chris Jordan.

New Zealand have welcomed back their IPL players only recently, so that’s a factor to take into consideration – how do they manage to shift between formats. McCullum himself was in India till very recently and it will be interesting to see how he goes alongside the likes of Kane Williamson, Corey Anderson, Tim Southee and Trent Boult, all of whom featured in the IPL.

Key Players:

Jimmy Anderson (England):
Anderson is three wickets away from 400 wickets in Test match cricket but more vitally it will be his ability to swing the ball that will test the opposition. Many have already billed this to be an Anderson v New Zealand Test series and given his home Test average against the Kiwis is 17.82 (25 when you include both, home and away), things could get right against him for the visitors.

Trent Boult (New Zealand):
One of the genuine swing bowlers of the world, Boult’s 30-match Test career has already seen him pick up 110 wickets at 27.39, which is excellent going in this day and age. He’s also played five Tests against England and scalped 19 wickets in those, with an average 25.47 runs per wicket. He will be England’s biggest threat and his battle against Cook at the start of the innings will be an interesting one.

England v New Zealand head to head:
This will be the 100th Test between England and New Zealand with the hosts having won 47 of the previous 99 and having lost just eight. The last time these had played each other was in 2013 and England had won that series 2-0. The venues were the same, Lord’s and Leeds and England won by 170 and 247 runs respectively.

England v New Zealand 1st Test betting tips:
Team batting first to win: England 13/10 or New Zealand 9/4
Anderson to be England’s best bowler: 9/4 at SkyBet
Joe Root to score first innings 50: 7/4 at Ladbrokes

Match starts at 10.30 am local time (9.30 a GMT) on May 21.

Read bet365 review here

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