Cricket fans are looking forward to the resumption of the most prestigious cricket team globally, the IPL (Indian Premier League). Unfortunately, this year's edition, IPL 14, was temporarily suspended in May after COVID breached the bio-secure bubbles of four IPL franchises.
As a result, the Indian cricket governing body BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) decided to carry out the remainder of the season in the UAE starting this September. Cricket enthusiasts received these tidings with joy in India, where cricket is adored by millions of fans, with top cricket players enjoying god-like status. However, the forced hiatus in IPL 14 has had adverse effects on the portion of die-hard cricket fans who participate in fantasy cricket.
Fantasy cricket is a fantasy sport where you create a virtual team (usually eleven players) based on professional cricket players. As the team owner, you earn points based on the performance of these players in actual games. Then, if you earn more points than your competitors, you are crowned the winner or champion, depending on the league format you are playing in. In addition, you can win real money or other prizes like sports memorabilia, plaques, or smartphones.
Fantasy cricket sites and apps have mushroomed recently, but they have many similarities in the types of leagues they offer. Some of the most popular types are
This is the most straightforward fantasy cricket game, and you also have the highest chance of winning. You play against a sole competitor, and the team owner with the highest points wins. In this league, you have a theoretical winning chance of 50%. Only the winner gets a prize though these prizes are usually low.
This type of fantasy cricket involves between three to six players. These players pool their entry fees which will constitute the winnings because, as the name suggests, "Winner takes all" The odds of winning range from 20% to 33%, depending on the number of participants in the league.
The next category of leagues ranks between winner take all and grand leagues, and it has anywhere between 30 to three hundred players. This means that the theoretical chances of winning are lower though the prize money is higher. They are the halfway point between the two major types of leagues.
This category of fantasy cricket is characterized by having very many players. Everyone tries their luck, and some leagues may have lakhs of players. It follows that the theoretical chances of winning this type of league are pretty slim, but you are assured of mega prizes if you win. To get an advantage over your rivals, you need to be faultless in your team selection and have tons of luck.
When deciding to use a specific site or app, be very keen on their points scoring system. Some sites' scoring system varies even across the three formats of cricket; Test, T20, and ODIs. For example, you might find that in some competitions, bowlers only collect significant points by taking wickets.
So while selecting your team members, you can ignore economic rates and use wicket-taking stats. However, in other competitions, the economic rate has a higher effect on points, so it will be prudent to choose bowlers who take one or two wickets for many runs.
As you select your team, be sure that your final list of players will actually play. You can ascertain things by keenly following the latest news about cricket. A foolproof of ensuring this is giving your team a once-over just after the coin toss to signal the beginning of the match.
Verification will give you a chance to make last-minute changes to guarantee every player has a chance to earn you points. Conversely, having a player benched could cost you dear points and contribute to a loss.
Pick your team captains and vice-captains wisely as they earn 2X and 1.5X points, respectively. Do not succumb to choosing these positions based on player popularity or your inclinations.
Instead, only have your best players in these positions. While competing in grand leagues where everyone chooses the most prominent stars for these roles, choosing lesser-known players who you believe will score big may see you emerge tops.
An oft-forgotten betting tip is to check the pitch and weather conditions for the match day. If the pitch is fast and bouncy, stock up on fast bowlers in your lineup. Conversely, spin bowlers may give you a competitive edge if the pitch has deteriorated or you play in rainy weather.
Put priority on top-order batters as they get more action over middle-order and bottom-order batters. This tip is critical in limited-overs cricket like T20 and, to a lesser extent, ODIs where lower-order batters may not even get to the crease.