England v Pakistan 4th Test: Resurgent hosts to belie Men in Green’s Oval record
Sam Barnard, Assistant Sports Editor | August 9, 2016
England v Pakistan
- Fourth and final Test
- Thursday, August 11th to Monday, August 15th
- Play starts: 11:00 BST
- The Oval, London
- Live on Sky Sports 2
England out to seal series
England edged ahead of their Test series with Pakistan after coming back from 103 runs behind following the first innings’ to win by 141 at Edgbaston.
The hosts now lead 2-1 ahead of their fourth and final match at The Oval, where they are 4/7 odds-on shouts with Coral to win. A draw at 7/2 will still seal the series for Alastair Cook’s men.
Batsmen improved on poor opening innings
England’s turnaround last time out was firstly thanks to their second innings batting performance, as each of the first seven men in the order scored 28 or over.
Half centuries from openers Cook (66) and Hales (54) ensured the hosts overturned the 103-run deficit without loss, while Joe Root also chipped in with a decent knock of 62. You can back the trio at 3/1, 5/1 and 5/2 respectively to be top England batsman in the first innings at The Oval.
Root, who fired 254 past Pakistan in the second Test, is a brilliant 5/1 price in an enhanced Coral wincast.
It was Jonny Bairstow (83) and Moeen Ali’s (86no) quick-fire 152-run partnership, though, that gave their side an unreachable lead, and the pair are tempting 6/1 and 16/1 shouts in the same market.
Deadly England bowlers on form
After putting themselves 342 runs ahead with under a day to go, it was left to England’s bowlers to finish off the job, and they did so in style.
Each of the five main bowlers (James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes, Steven Finn and Ali) picked up two wickets apiece to skittle the visitors out for just 201, although their tail-end put up a commendable fight.
Anderson’s efforts meant that he returned to the top of the world bowling Test rankings, so he is favourite at 5/2 to celebrate that feat by being best with the ball in the first innings for England.
All-rounder Woakes, though, has arguably been the pick of the bowlers this series so far, almost certainly securing his place in the team as a result. He’s 11/4 in the same market.
Pakistan hoping to continue Oval run
As for Pakistan, they can take heart in the fact that they won at The Oval against England last time out in 2010, and in fact have only lost once here in the last six attempts. They are 7/2 for victory again, to level the series.
Azhar Ali impressed most for the Men in Green in terms of batting, hitting 92 in the first innings. After his 139 in the last Test at Edgbaston, he is 4/1 to be top Pakistan batsman once more.
Sami Aslam also impressed after replacing opener Shan Masood last time out, getting knocks of 82 and 70, and so is a 9/2 chance.
In terms of bowling, Sohail Khan took a five-for at Edgbaston, while Mohammad Amir did the same at The Oval in 2010. The duo are respective 7/2 and 9/4 shouts to be top Pakistan bowler in the first innings.
Coral’s top tip: Root is a tasty 5/1 shout in an enhanced wincast.