England vs Afghanistan: Rashid and Root to star for hosts

England vs Afghanistan: Rashid and Root to star for hosts

Start time: 1030, 18/06/2019

Venue: Old Trafford

TV: Sky Sports

England will look to close in on a place in the Cricket World Cup semi-finals by brushing aside tournament outsiders Afghanistan at Old Trafford.

The hosts have won three of their four matches so far, whereas their opponents have predictably fallen to a quartet of convincing defeats.

There looked to be plenty of turn in this pitch during India’s triumph over Pakistan on Sunday, so spinners could come to the fore here.

That makes 14/1 for Adil Rashid to be man of the match a tempting option for our first England vs Afghanistan prediction.

The 31-year-old has yet to sparkle during the round-robin stage but has been outstanding over the past couple of years and is backed to start showing his true worth.

A Look At England’s Betting Odds

England’s eight-wicket win over the West Indies in Southampton was slightly marred by injuries to Eoin Morgan and Jason Roy, but this seems an ideal opportunity to let them rest and recover.

James Vince and Moeen Ali are more than capable of filling the void versus such limited opposition, while the in-form Joe Root can be relied upon to take any reshuffling of the batting order in his stride.

With scores of 51, 107 and 100 not out in the tournament to date, the Yorkshire star is perfectly primed to shoulder any increased burden.

“Rooty batted beautifully throughout against the West Indies,” said all-rounder Chris Woakes, after sharing a century stand with the Test captain.

“He’s always calm. I’ve batted a few times with him in Test matches and he’s a world-class player, so to watch him operate from the other end is great.

“It was probably one of his quicker hundreds and to do it the way he did was fantastic. To be at the other end with a box office seat was nice.”

Looking at the England vs Afghanistan odds, we reckon 11/4 for Root to be his side’s top scorer again is hard to resist.

A Look At Afghanistan’s Betting Odds

Afghanistan showed some encouraging signs in losses to Australia, Sri Lanka and New Zealand, but Saturday’s drubbing by South Africa was pretty demoralising.

Spinner Imran Tahir took four wickets as the minnows were whittled out for 125 in 34.1 overs, before the Proteas powered to victory by nine wickets.

However, captain Gulbadin Naib felt his side were hampered by two rain delays after initially seeming well set at 69 for two.

“We were going well and maybe it was a turning point when the rains came,” he said. “I think we missed something from there and we did not do well in the batting. We need to control our nerves better.”

Hazratullah Zazai has been far from disgraced in posting scores of 30, 34 and 22 since starting out with a duck, so 7/2 for him to be his side’s leading batsman completes our England vs Afghanistan betting tips.

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