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The Ashes 2023 Third Test: Prediction & Best Bets

We preview the third Ashes Test and provide the best bets and a prediction, with Australia looking to take an unassailable 3-0 lead.

Ashes Third Test Prediction Best Bets

England and Australia will face off in Thursday’s third Test of the Ashes at Headingley, Leeds. The hosts will be looking to keep the series alive after losing the drama-filled second Test last Sunday by 43 runs. Lwanele Poswayo previews this Test and provides his best bets and a prediction.

Both sides are forced to make changes, with Olie Pope ruled out of the series with a shoulder injury while Australia suffered a massive blow after Nathan Lyon injured his calf during the second Test. 

Can England keep the series alive with a win, or will the Aussies take an unassailable 3-0 lead and retain the Ashes?

Stuart Broad

Stuart Broad will be fired up for this Test after Jonny Bairstow’s controversial dismissal in the previous Test. He has been England’s best bowler in the series so far and is the series’ leading wicket-taker, with 11 wickets at 26.90.

He’ll be relishing the opportunity to bowl to David Warner and Marnus Labuschagne after dismissing the former on 15 occasions in Test cricket. In this series, he’s also had Labuschagne’s number, taking his wicket twice in the first Test and giving him problems at Lord’s.

Back him to be England’s top first-innings bowler if he’s not rested for this Test (highly unlikely).

Suggested Bet: Stuart Broad to be England’s top 1st innings bowler at 3.50.

Alternative Bet: Stuart Broad to take over 2.5 1st innings wickets at 1.80.

Steve Smith

I backed Smith to be Australia’s top 1st innings batter in the first game, but he did not deliver. He looked to be back to his very best in the second Test, with scores of 110 & 34. He has a phenomenal record in England and against them. Smith averages 58.36 against the English and 58.51 on English soil, scoring 8 centuries.

With Usman Khawaja and David Warner in good form, the safe bet would be to go for the overs on Smith’s run line or back him to score 50+ runs in the first innings.

Suggested Bet: Steve Smith to score over 40.5 runs in the 1st innings at 1.86.

Value Bet: Steve Smith to score 50+ runs in the 1st innings at 2.10.


In the series so far, this is the toughest match to predict. The weather could play a massive role in this game, with a big possibility of rain in the last three days of the Test. 

Another pivotal factor is the toss. There have been eight Tests in eight years at Headingley, five of those have been won by the team fielding first. None of those eight have been drawn, so I’m backing the team that has proven to be more adaptable in this series Australia.

Prediction: Australia to win at 2.25


England have won each of their last four Tests in Leeds, with the most recent being their seven-wicket win over New Zealand in June 2022.

Three of those four games saw England bowl first and skittle their opposition for a first innings score of under 200.

There has been just one instance in history of a team coming back from a 0-2 deficit to win a Test series (Don Bradman’s Australia in 1936/37).

Usman Khawaja has top-scored in six of Australia’s last 11 Test innings.

Josh Hazlewood to Ben Duckett in Test cricket: 3/45 from 44 balls.

Jonny Bairstow boasts a tremendous Test average of 63.67 at his home ground, which includes two centuries and two fifties from 11 innings.

Joe Root’s 15 Test innings at Headingley have produced two centuries, four half-centuries and three ducks.

If he is to be selected, it’s worth noting that Josh Tongue dismissed Warner and Smith twice each at Lord’s for combined figures of 4/67 from 95 balls.

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