In this County Championship betting guide, we will go over the favourites to win the competition in the biggest First Class cricket tournament in English domestic cricket. We will also cover the format of the competition, it’s history and the teams taking part, along with news and popular County Championship tips.
Best Betting Sites for the English County Championship
English County Championship Betting Odds, Tips & Predictions
The County Championship brings with it a plethora of betting options, with the ability to bet on specific players, teams and outrights, making this one of the most exciting cricket competitions to bet on.
English County championship Betting Odds
The County Championship betting odds will be updated here as soon as they are available.
English County Championship Betting Tips & Predictions
When taking part in County Championship betting, the most important thing bar backing the right County Championship tips, is ensuring you do your research. Historically, there are certain teams and players that have excelled when on the county circuit. For the last few years, Essex have dominated division 1, winning two of the last three titles. They will clearly be amongst the favourites in the County Championship betting, while we predict a lot of County Championship tips will feature them prevelantly too.
Of course, County Championship tips really do depend on which players are available to the counties. After the retirement of England’s all time leading runs scorer Alaistar Cook from the international squad, he returned to Essex. The opener has dominated the county scene since then, scoring a glut of runs and consistently giving Essex a fantastic platform to build upon.
There are a number of top quality Count Championship players available all year round, but the gulf in class between County Championship and international squads is clearly massive. This simply means that when an international from any side joins up with a County team, they are immediately given a real boost, and this will be reflected in their County Championship odds.
Indeed, this is shown no clearer than in the leading run scorer for the season. In 2019, Dominic Sibley (1324 runs) dominated the top scorer list, while Rory Burns, Kumar Sangakkara, Keaton Jennings, James Vince and Moeen Ali have all top scored over the last 10 years. Every single one of these players has featured for England (with the exception of Sangakkara who was a legend of Sri Lankan cricket).
At the other end of the table, things are a little more difficult to call. While there are always favourites to go down and get relegated to division 2, it is usually dependent on which teams lose more of their top players to international duty and other competitions.
As things stand, there are currently no odds yet available for the County Championship, but as soon as they are available, we will post them here.
Popular Bets For The English County Championship
As with any other major competition in cricket or any other sport, the County Championship does not lack big betting markets. Indeed, the County Championship odds are regularly updated throughout the season and during each game, with in-play markets a big part of County Championship betting. Below, we have gathered some of the most popular County Championship betting markets that are readily available for both experienced and novice cricket bettors to get involved with.
Outright English County Championship Winner Betting
Here, you will be betting on who you think will come out on top at the end of the County Championship season. If you want the best County Championship odds on this market, you are better off wagering before the season has started. This is because if you decide to back Yorkshire to win the competition after they have won their first six games in a row and boast a healthy lead, then the odds will be shorter, therefore offering a smaller payout.
However, if you back Yorkshire before a ball has been bowled and they then excel, you will likely have picked up better odds. This is of course a more risky way of betting, as even the best sides are liable to underperforming. The best County Championship tips will have weighed up the risk of betting before the teams have started playing alongside the relative strength of the team’s attacking and bowling lineups.
(Outright) Top Batsman Betting Odds
This is a market that can generally be followed either in an outright sense over the course of a season, or in a single match. Over the course of the season, you would back a batsman from a specific team to score the most runs. Generally, you are best off backing a player that is very skilled, but will not likely get called up for international duty during the season.
In past years, backing Cook to top score would be all well and good as he was the best batsman in England, but the chances of him scoring enough runs before he left to play for England to top score in the Championship were incredibly slim. Instead, you would be better off backing an England hopeful that is currently pushing for a call up instead. This sort of player will usually be better than the rest of the pack and, because they are pushing to be in the England setup, they will not want to take their foot off the gas with regard to run scoring.
If you were utilising this market in a single match, it is a very different proposition. Here, you should work out what sort of pitch the teams will be playing on, and what bowlers will take the ball in the game. This is worthwhile because Alex Hales may go into the match in fine form, but if he has struggled at the Oval in recent years, then he may not be the smart choice to back.
Indeed, if the pitch is particularly slow and is perfect for spin bowling or there is a grassy top with overcast conditions that are perfect for swing bowling, then perhaps a player that struggles against a spinning or swinging ball is not the right option to pick. However, simply put, this market asks you to back the one batsman that you think will top score in the first innings.
(Outright) Top Wicket Taker Betting Odds
Just like the top batsman market, this one can be wagered on with regard to a season long bet or a single game bet. The season long bet requires you to pick the bowler that will finish the entire season with the most wickets, which can be incredibly tricky to do. This is because certain grounds are better suited to certain bowlers, while the weather conditions always play a big part in how the bowler’s fare.
If a match makes it to the final day, the spin bowlers will likely have a field day aiming for the cracks and footholes on the pitch, while a hard pitch is perfect for taller and faster bowlers to run in hard and bang in their deliveries. Preparation is key when betting on this market, while backing the right County Championship tips is also important.
As far as using this market for a single match, you will need to pick out the bowler you think will take the most wickets in the match. Look out for the terminology in this market too, as often a bookmaker will stipulate ‘top wicket taker (first innings)’, meaning that you are only backing who will be the top wicket taker for a side in the first innings for both teams instead of the full match.
To Score A Century Betting Tips
In cricket, there are few greater honours for a batsman than scoring a century. A century is when a batsman scores 100 runs in an innings without losing their wicket. This is obviously difficult to do, and so does not consistently happen in matches. This market will see you betting on whether or not a century will be scored in the match. The odds for a century to be scored will generally be odds-on, meaning it is far more likely to happen than it not happening.
However, if you believe that the outfield is particularly slow, or that the bowlers from both sides will be on top throughout, then you can bet that there will not be a century scored. If you nail this selection in the right game, you could see a decent payout.
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Tournament Structure For The English County Championship
The upcoming 2021 County Championship will be taking on a new look format for the season, with the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic seeing the competition take on a different style.
Three groups have been created and they are as follows:
Group 1: Essex, Warwickshire, Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Worcestershire and Durham.
Group 2: Somerset, Hampshire, Surrey Gloucestershire, Middlesex and Leicestershire.
Group 3: Kent, Yorkshire, Lancashire, Northamptonshire, Glamorgan and Sussex.
This seedings were decided via the performances of the different sides across the 2019 County Championship and the 2020 Bob Willis Trophy. The powers that be have ensured that derby matches will also be accommodated meaning that some of the most fierce and entertaining rivalries in English cricket will still happen, allowing their fans and cricket lovers to revel in these clashes.
Each side will play 10 total matches in their group, five at home and five away. The top two counties from each group will progress to Division One, with the teams placed in third and fourth going into Division Two, while the sides in fifth and sixth move into Division Three. A further four matches will be played by each side in each division.
There is an extra incentive to ensure a county makes it into Division One as they are not just playing for the County Championship title, but also for a chance to appear in the Bob Willis Trophy final. For the county that finishes top of Division One, they will lift the County Championship trophy, while the top two sides in Division One will also battle it out in a one-off final for the Bob Willis Trophy. It means that there is a massive chance that the 2020 County Championship and Bob Willis Trophies will go to the same team.
Each of these County Championship matches will follow a four-day format, while the Bob Willis Trophy final at Lord’s will be played across five days. While this format is a far cry from how the County Championship and Bob Willis Trophy have been played in recent seasons, this new format will make things exceptionally exciting.
History of the English County Championship
Established back in 1890, the County Championship is the top domestic first-class league in England and Wales. The competition consists of 18 different counties from the UK, with 17 hailing from England and one from Wales. Despite matches between different counties taking place as far back as 1709, it was not for another 181 years that the counties would be brought together in one competition.
The 1890 season began with Gloucestershire, Yorkshire, Sussex, Surrey, Middlesex, Nottinghamshire, Lancashire and Kent all battling it out to win the first County Championship title, with each season bringing with it a new favourite to win the competition in the County Championship odds.
The competition has since been expanded to 18 teams, with Durham, Essex, Glamorgan, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Hampshire, Northamptonshire, Worcestershire and Warwickshire being added to the competition, which is now played over two divisions.
The County Championship has seen some incredible players grace the pitches across England and Wales, and among the most talented was West Indies’ star, Brian Lara. Lara, famed for his world record Test match top score of 400 not out against England, also holds the record for the most runs scored in a County Championship innings, notching an incredible 501 not out for Warwickshire against Durham at Edgbaston in 1994.
At the other end of the pitch, Hedley Verity ended with bowling figures of 10/10 for Yorkshire against Glamorgan way back in 1932, with these figures the best by any bowler in County Championship history. If either of these men were around now and playing at their peak, they would both feature prominently in most County Championship tips and match predictions, although we can only imagine the County Championship odds for Lara scoring centuries or Verity taking the most wickets would not offer much value!
Yorkshire remains the most successful side in County Championship history with 32 titles and one shared title, with Surrey a distant second with 19 titles and one shared title. Both Yorkshire and Surrey feature prominently in County Championship betting, with their County Championship odds in the outright markets usually placing them amongst the favourites. Away from the County Championship betting favourites, Gloucestershire, Northamptonshire and Somerset are yet to lift the trophy, although that is not to say that their year is not coming.
Past Winners Of The English County Championship
English County Championship Key Stats
- The highest score in a County Championship match of 501 not out was made by Brian Lara for Warwickshire against Durham in 1994 at Edgbaston.
- Yorkshire hold the most County Championship titles with 32 titles and one shared title.
- Yorkshire recorded the highest ever score by a side as they posted 887 all out against Warwickshire at Edgbaston in 1896.
- The lowest score ever recorded was 12 all out by Northamptonshire against Gloucestershire at the Spa Ground in 1907.
- James Hildreth is the County Championship all time top scorer with 9695 runs scored in 242 innings at an average of 42.52.
- Graham Onions is the County Championship all time leading wicket taker with 390 wickets in 86 matches, with best innings figures of 9-67.
- The highest partnership of 523 came between Michael Carberry and Neil McKenzie for Hampshire against Yorkshire in 2011.
- James Hildreth boasts the most centuries in County Championship history with 29 100’s.
- Tim Ambrose has recorded the most ducks (scores of zero), with 29.
English County Championship Betting FAQs
1. Which are the best English County Championship Betting Sites?
Many bookmakers will claim to offer the best odds when it comes to County Championship betting, but as per our list of the top bookmakers for the County Championship, you will not go far wrong with bet365 and Betway.
2. Who Is The Best Team In The English County Championship?
As is the same in many other leagues and sports, no team is really truly dominant in the County Championship. Yorkshire have excelled over the years in the competition by winning the most titles, while Essex are the current champions of the competition after winning the 2019 iteration.
3. What Are The Most Popular English County Championship Betting Markets?
The standard match winner is a popular County Championship betting option, but it does not always offer great value when betting on the favourite. Instead, many bettors look to back players in the top batsman and top wicket taker markets. You can also back the outright County Championship winner, while there are also more niche markets like to score a century, to win the toss or highest opening partnership.
4. Is Betting On The English County Championship Popular?
Yes, County Championship betting is popular. However, that is not to say that it is as popular as other top cricket tournaments like the IPL or the Cricket World Cup. The ability to bet live and in-play makes cricket a very exciting sport to bet on and many bookies do offer in-play options on site.
Geo-restrictions apply. You must have a funded account or to have placed a bet in the last 24 hours
CricketBettingAdvice Final Say
The County Championship may not be the most popular cricketing competition in the world, but it certainly brings in a fair share of betting from UK punters and from across the world. The ability to bet on a very impressive range of matches and betting markets make County Championship betting something that does not get boring quickly. If you are to sign up to a bookmaker to bet on the County Championship with and follow our County Championship tips, we recommend signing up with the likes of bet365 and Betway with the trio boasting some of the best online cricketing betting.