County Predictions

After the success of last year’s predictions, I thought it unwise to stick my neck out on the line this year. Yet I’ll do it anyway.

Division One

  1. Warwickshire – 9/2
  2. Nottinghamshire – 11/2
  3. Yorkshire – 6/1
  4. Durham – 7/1
  5. Lancashire 15/2
  6. Middlesex – 8/1
  7. Sussex – 9/1
  8. Somerset – 10/1
  9. Northants 30/1

Like last year, Warwickshire are favourites. If Jonathan Trott doesn’t get thrust straight back into the England side and thus become unavailable to them, you can understand why – they’ve enough nibbly all-rounders, wicket takers and depth to be serious contenders. Again it’s hard to see Durham doing as well as they did last season – again, they’ll probably defy those expectations with a results pitch and an excellent new ball pair (with Onions tipped for England duty, I quite like Chris Rushworth for top wicket taker @16/1). Yorkshire seem to have gotten a lot of press this year but although the crop of batsmen look excellent with the addition of Kane Williamson, more significantly I doubt their firepower with the ball since Headingley seems to be a tamer wicket than it perhaps once was. My pick for this season is instead Nottinghamshire at a competitive 11/2Peter Siddle and Luke Fletcher have wickets in them, Samit Patel, Phil Jacques 28/1 and James Taylor should provide the runs. They don’t have much in the way of a spinner but I’m not sure that there will be much need for one; of course this summer will be gloomy and overcast.

I have Sussex down to struggle. A lot might depend on Ed Joyce and Steve Magoffin – never bad men to depend on, but if they lose Prior and Jordan to England duty, I don’t know if Sussex have enough quality elsewhere if Joyce and Magoffin don’t perform well. After tipping Derbyshire to do alright last season, I’ll refrain from applying the same curse to Northamptonshire, and just say that they might stay stay up over Somerset – who look particularly frail this season after Trescothick’s barren year. Lancs aren’t in any danger of doing anything at the top or the bottom.

Division Two

  1. Surrey 7/2
  2. Hampshire – 4/1
  3. Essex – 5/1
  4. Derbyshire – 7/1
  5. Kent – 9/1
  6. Worcestershire – 9/1
  7. Gloucestershire – 12/1
  8. Glamorgan – 14/1
  9. Leicestershire – 50/1

Surrey have Graeme Smith and Kevin Pieterson. There, I’ve said it. They’ll do alright – if they can eke out some consistency from Tremlett, Dernbach and Meaker with the ball then they’ll win the league. If they can’t then I fancy my local side Hampshire to pip them. Kyle Abbott (10/1) and Matt Coles could be a brilliant signings and Jimmy Adams and James Vince will provide enough runs without being picked up by England . Kent were able to let Coles go because they’ve signed Doug Bollinger (12/1) who has an exceptional record in Sheffield Shield cricket – worth a fiver on top wicket taker. Derbyshire have Madsen (@14/1) and Chanderpaul which makes them dangerous, while Essex have been tipped elsewhere. Worcestershire, Gloucestershire, Leicestershire and Glamorgan will do well to finish in the top half.

Looking at the odds, this means that if you stuck a pound on each of the six highlighted bets, you’d no doubt lose six pounds.

 

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About wrongunatlongon

I'll muse on various subjects, mainly involving willow, leather and grass. My natural instincts is to heap as many compound adjectives as I can to sporting natterings. If you like, then feel free to link :)
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