How do I bet on the method of first wicket?

So you’ve set yourself up with an online account, you’ve deposited funds and you’re looking to make your bet, and you have chosen to take a punt on the method of first dismissal. Here’s the explainer.
The method of first dismissal is fairly self-explanatory: it means how the first batsman to be dismissed in an innings was got out by the opposition.

There are five primary ways in which a batsman can be dismissed. They are:

  • Bowled – when the bowler bowls a ball which strikes the batsman’s stumps, dislodging the bails
  • Lbw – when the batsman is struck on the pads in front of the stumps and the ball is going on to hit the stumps
  • Caught – when the batsman hits the ball in the air to a fielder and the fielder makes a successful catch
  • Stumped – when the batsmen leaves his crease (an area near the stumps marked by a painted line) and the wicketkeeper removes the bails before he can get back
  • Run out – when a fielder throws down the stumps with the batsman attempting a run but failing to reach the crease

Further methods include obstructing the field, timed out and hit the ball twice but they are all incredibly rare and are not worth a punt.
So, what should you consider when placing your bet?

What is the format of the game?

The shorter the format, the wider the spread of dismissals.
In T20 cricket, for instance, the likelihood of being stumped or run out is considerably higher than in a Test – where typically around 5 per cent of dismissals are stumpings and 3 per cent are run outs.
If you are betting on longer form cricket, then, your best bet will be with bowled, caught or lbw.

Who is the batsman and who is the bowler?

Do your research. Figure out who is going to be opening the batting and who is going to be opening the bowling. Look at the way in which the batsmen in question get out most often (simple searches using the excellent Howstat online database will help), and look at how the bowlers take wickets most regularly.
By doing that, you’ll be able to come up with a fairly simple equation.
Take the upcoming Ashes series, for example. Jimmy Anderson has taken 377 of his 575 Test wickets caught (65.7 per cent). Australian opener David Warner, meanwhile, has been caught on 71.2 per cent of occasions in the format. The maths adds up to a good probability of you cashing in; you just have to do the legwork.

Where is the game being played?

Different stadiums, different times of day and night and different colour balls will all contribute to the likelihood of certain methods of dismissal.
Cloud cover can enable swing, which may lead to more lbws as batsmen struggle to pick the line of the ball, for instance. A white Kookaburra ball is generally less likely to move in the air, meanwhile, than a red Duke’s.

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