The hopes of an Australian clean-sweep are over following the dull draw in Melbourne, but both teams will still have plenty to play for heading into the fifth and final Test of The Ashes.
England showed some signs of life against Australia, but taking 20 wickets continues to be an issue and they once again struggled to contain Steve Smith.
Can Australia finish The Ashes with an emphatic win or will England give The Barmy Army something to cheer about? We have analysed both sides and our Ashes Fifth Test tips can be found below.
Head To Head Betting
Australia are $1.23 to win the Fifth Ashes Test and both England and the draw are priced at $4.50.
There were some concerning signs for Australia in the Fourth Test at the MCG and there is no doubt that the bowling attack does lack a spark without Mitchell Starc in the side and he is no certainty to return for this Test.
Nathan Lyon was the key-man for Australia in the absence of Starc and the spin-bowling friendly conditions at the SCG should suit him, while there is a chance that he will be partnered by Ashton Agar.
Australia’s batting was somewhat shaky in the first innings at the MCG, but they responded well when they were forced to save the game in their second innings and the form of Steve Smith continues to be nothing short of outstanding.
England produced their best performance of the tour at the MCG – Alastair Cook was nothing short of outstanding with the bat – but they never looked likely to bowl Australia out in the second innings and taking 20 wickets does look beyond them.
Australia have won 11 of their past 14 Test Matches at the SCG and their only defeat in that time did come at the hands of England in 2011, while England were also able to beat the Aussies at the venue in 2003.
Two of the past three Test Matches at the SCG have ended in draws and it really would not surprise if we see a repeat in this Test Match – especially if Starc does not take his place for Australia.
There is a chance of rain in Sydney throughout the Test Match and with this mind in mind, the $4.50 for the draw does standout out as nice value.
Back The Draw @ $4.50
Top Australia 1st Innings Runscorer
Steve Smith ($3.25) is currently a clear favourite in this betting market from David Warner ($3.75), Usman Khawaja ($5.50), Shaun Marsh ($7) and Cameron Bancroft ($8).
There are few venues in Australia where Steve Smith hasn’t scored big runs and the SCG is no exception.
Smith has the chance to join Donald Bradman as the only Australian to hit four centuries in an Ashes Series and it would take a brave man to bet against him doing just that.
Back Steve Smith To Top Score For Australia @ $3.25
Top England 1st Innings Runscorer
Joe Root ($4) is a narrow favourite in our Top England 1st Innings Runscorer betting market from Alastair Cook ($4.33), Mark Stoneman ($6), Dawid Malan ($6), Jonny Bairstow ($6.50) and James Vince ($6.50).
We have been waiting for Joe Root to show what he is capable of all summer long – he has made plenty of starts, but failed to go on with the job.
Root has shown that he is capable of handling this Australian Fast-Bowling attack and this is his chance to finally get that big score.
Back Joe Root To Top Score For England @ $4
Man Of The Match
Steve Smith is currently a $4.50 favourite to win the Man Of The Match Award from Mitchell Starc ($7), David Warner ($8), Josh Hazlewood ($8), Pat Cummins ($9), Nathan Lyon ($10), James Anderson ($13), Joe Root ($13) and Mitchell Marsh ($13).
Smith is the obvious choice, but he does look under the odds at his current price and the Australian player that does standout at their current price is Nathan Lyon.
If Australia is going to win this game, Lyon is going to need to bowl extremely well and the $10 for him to claim the award is well and truly over the odds.
Back Nathan Lyon @ $10 & Joe Root @ $13 To Win Man Of The Match