Australia Favored to Defeat Old Rivals New Zealand in 1st Test

Dean Etheridge
By , Updated on: Feb 26, 2024 07:00 PM
Australia Favored to Defeat Old Rivals New Zealand in 1st Test

New Zealand hosts Australia in the first of a two-match Test series this week. Australia is the favorite to win the match and the series, and after sweeping the recent T20 series, who would bet against them beating the hosts again? In our latest cricket betting picks we look ahead to the 1st Test and tell you the best bets to place.

  • What; 1st Test
  • Who; New Zealand vs. Australia
  • Where; Basin Reserve, Wellington, New Zealand
  • When; February 28th - March 3rd, 2024

Australia has held the upper hand over New Zealand in cricket for almost as long as the Black Caps have been playing the sport. In more recent times, New Zealand has improved, but that still hasn’t prevented Australia from winning the last six Test matches and 16 of the previous 19.

Whilst New Zealand won the inaugural Test Championship in 2021, and during this time has been a match for any side in the world, when it comes to Australia, the Kiwis just seem to have a weakness. It never seems to matter how good the New Zealand players are. Australia still seems to come out on top.

Now, with the two sides due to play a two-Test series in New Zealand, can the hosts finally break the domination of their Tasman neighbors and win their first series against Australia since a one-off Test match in 1990?

New Zealand vs Australia: 1st Test Betting

Before we get onto the series betting, let’s first look at the betting to win the opening Test match. The visitors are the favorites. The best cricket betting online sites price Australia at -175 to win the 1st Test. New Zealand is +350, and the draw is +400.

New Zealand vs. Australia 1st TestBovadaBetOnlineBetUS
New Zealand+350+350+350

In the props markets, Kane Williamson is the +275 favorite to be the top New Zealand run scorer in the 1st Innings. He is followed by Daryl Mitchell at +350, along with Devon Conway and Rachin Ravindra at +400.

Neil Wager was the +250 favorite to be the top bowler for the hosts. That was until he retired from Test cricket after hearing he wasn't selected to play in the 1st Test.

Captain Tim Southee now leads the betting at +250, the same price as Matt Henry.

For the Aussies, Steven Smith is the +300 favorite to be the top batter. Next is Marnus Labuschagne at +333, with Travis Head at +400.

Take your pick from the Aussie pace trio to be the top bowler. One of the three always comes to the party and produces a performance. Pat Cummins is the favorite at +225. He is followed by Mitchell Starc at +250 and Josh Hazlewood at +300.

New Zealand vs Australia: Series Betting

In the pre-series cricket betting odds, Australia is the favorite to win at -175. A drawn series is +225, and a win for New Zealand is +600.

It seems strange to see the same odds available on Australia to win the 1st Test and the series outright. But with it being only a two-match series, the bookmakers think it likely that Australia may only need to win one of the matches to clinch the series.

The weather could play a part and possibly rain off one match. Or it could even just be that the batters are on top, and one of the two Test matches ends in a draw.

In such scenarios, Australia will likely hold the edge over the hosts. The visitors have the bowling attack to open up a tight game, and it could be that the series is decided by a session of play in each Test match.

We feel that Australia will win those key moments, and we make them our pick to win the series outright. Back them at +137 to win the series 2-0.

Australia To win series vs New Zealand 2-0

Our 1st Test Betting Picks

If we are picking Australia to win the series 2-0, we must be picking them to win the 1st Test. The visitors lost their last Test match to the West Indies at home and received a lot of criticism for an under-par performance. They will want to hit back and shut their critics up, and we can see them doing it. So we make Australia our pick to win the 1st Test.

Australia To beat New Zealand in 1st Test

Top Run Scorer Picks

Elsewhere, in the betting to be the top run scorer, we like the look of a couple of players in the Australian ranks.

First up, we’re going for Travis Head. Opening in New Zealand will prove difficult, so we expect a lot of Australia’s runs to come from their middle-order engine room. Travis Head bats at No.5, so the new ball should be less of an issue when he comes into bat.

In the 1st Test against the West Indies, Head top scored with 119 in Australia’s total of 283 all out. Things didn’t go so well in the 2nd Test, where Head bagged a king pair. But like the rest of the Australia team, Head will want to prove a point after his horror show against the Windies at the Gabba.

So we’re going to back him to be the top Australia batter at +400.

Travis Head Top Australian Batter

Another bet we like the look of is Mitchell Marsh at +700. The all-rounder has been in great form in recent weeks. Marsh bats six. Like with Travis Head, the new ball shouldn’t be an issue when he comes out to bat. Marsh also has the license to play his shots, making him more dangerous.

We make Mitchell Marsh our final betting pick to be the top Australian batter.

Mitchell Marsh Top Australian Batter

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Meet the author

Dean Etheridge

Dean Etheridge has over ten years of writing experience in the world of sports betting. Starting out as a hobby on his own soccer betting website, Dean has now seen his picks published across various affiliate sites along with The Sun and TalkSPORT where he writes regul...

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