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England massive 6/5 top price on Coral for Ashes series success

| 20.11.2013

Coral are taking on Alastair Cook and co by going top price about an England Ashes victory in Australia at 6/5.

The Baggy Green have been backed in from 7/4 into 13/8 favourites for the first test at The Gabba, where they haven’t lost for 25 years and England have not won since 1986.

The hosts are certainly talking a great game ahead of the series, with Aussie batsman David Warner claiming the visitors are scared to face his country at the Brisbane Cricket Ground in Woolloongabba.

The Australian media’s campaign against all-rounder Stuart Broad is in full-swing, after the England man’s heinous crime of refusing to walk over the summer.

Brisbane-based newspaper The Courier Mail have called for a ‘Broad Ban’ and insist they will only refer to the Nottinghamshire star as either ‘Stuart Fraud’ or ‘a 27-year-old English medium pace bowler’.

Captain Michael Clarke has also remained bullish about his side’s chances and wrote an ‘impassioned’ article for Australia’s Telegraph newspaper about The Gabba being their turf and how well they know their opponents after the summer.

Australia are undoubtedly a more settled side since the 3-0 loss and may win in Brisbane, but England are far too strong a unit to write off, even if they fail to make the perfect start.

In 2010, Andrew Strauss’ side drew the first test before smashing Australia in Adelaide and went on to become the first team to beat them by an innings twice and then three times Down Under.

Cook top-scored with a massive 235 at The Gabba that November on his way to a series-leading tally of 766 runs – almost 200 ahead of second-best scorer Mike Hussey.

The Essex opener is 5/1 co-favourite with Clarke to repeat that feat and has to be a value bet considering his prior record on Aussie pitches.

England number five batsman Ian Bell features prominently in the top series batsman market at 13/2 after outscoring all around him with 562 runs over the summer, which included 100s at Trent Bridge, Lords and Chester-le-Street.

With wicket-keeping stalwart and middle-order batsman extraordinaire Matt Prior thought to be winning his fight against injury ahead of The Gabba clash, England look set to make just two changes to the core of the team that won convincingly back in Blighty.

Michael Carberry will surely open alongside Cook after claiming another 50 in England’s last preparatory match, pushing Joe Root down the order into six and leaving Jonny Bairstow as sub wicket keeper should Prior break down.

Chris Tremlett is still fancied to take the last bowling slot ahead of Boyd Rankin and Steven Finn, after proving economical if not destructive in the match against Cricket Australia Invitational XI.

The Surrey quick took 17 wickets in 2010/11, which was the second-best tally of any bowler on either team bar James Anderson, who took 24 and is 7/2 favourite to be deadliest attacker again in Oz.