Australia v England – Cricket ODI – 14 January
England will need to put their comprehensive 4-0 Ashes defeat to the back of their minds as they begin a five-match ODI series with Australia, starting in Melbourne on Sunday.
England named a 16-man squad for the series back in December, which included Alex Hales and Ben Stokes – though Stokes has since been withdrawn as he still waits to hear if he will be charged by the CPS for his role in an incident outside a Bristol nightclub in September. Dawid Malan, who did impress during the Ashes, has replaced him.
England’s 16-man ODI squad to face Australia, five-match series:
Eoin Morgan (Middlesex) (Captain) Moeen Ali (Worcestershire) Jonathan Bairstow (Yorkshire) Jake Ball (Nottinghamshire) Sam Billings (Kent) Jos Buttler (Lancashire) Tom Curran (Surrey) Alex Hales (Nottinghamshire) Liam Plunkett (Yorkshire) Adil Rashid (Yorkshire) Joe Root (Yorkshire) Jason Roy (Surrey) Ben Stokes (Durham) David Willey (Yorkshire) Chris Woakes (Warwickshire) Mark Wood (Durham)
The ODI squad will be building towards the 2019 World Cup, to be held in England, and come into this series off the back of a 4-0 win against the West Indies in the summer.
England are currently ranked the 4th best ODI team in the world, on the same number of ranking points as 3rd best Australia – so this should be a much more keenly contested series than the Ashes.
Warm up match
In their limited overs warm-up match against a Cricket Australia XI in Sydney on Thursday, an unbeaten 81 from captain Eoin Morgan, helped England to a five-wicket victory, chasing down the hosts 258-9 off 50 overs, in just 40.5 overs.
Jonny Bairstow (36) and Jason Roy (40) opened the batting and began a steady chase, to set up the perfect platform for those who followed. Alex Hales (52) got his half-century, before Morgan saw England over the line. Only Moeen Ali failed with the bat, scoring just one before losing his wicket to seamer Gabe Bell, but he was better with the ball, picking up two wickets.
Pace bowler, Liam Plunkett, also took two wickets, finishing on 2-52, but it was Adil Rashid who really impressed, finishing with figures of 3-45.
Australia go into the first ODI as favourites, but England’s big hitting means they can be a very dangerous side. With a team freshened up from the disappointment of the Ashes defeat, England can get off to the perfect start with a win in Melbourne.
Expect to see David Warner and Aaron Finch amongst the runs for the Aussies, whilst Jason Roy, Alex Hales and Eoin Morgan should do the damage with the bat for England.
With the ball, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins are the obvious threat for the host, whereas England will look to Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid and Tom Curran to take the wickets for the visitors.
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