Old Enemies Renew Rivalry

Picture: Paul Ellis/AFP
Ian Bell found form in the 3rd ODI against New Zealand. Picture: Paul Ellis/AFP
Hosts England  will be looking to start the final ever renewal of the Champions Trophy with a win when they face Australia  at Edgbaston on Saturday night (AEST). Alistair Cook’s men may have lost their One Day International series against New Zealand 2-1 earlier this month, but go into this match full of confidence after scoring a 34 run victory over the Black Caps on Tuesday.

Stuart Broad and Steven Finn both returned from injury for England in that match and are expected to take their place on Saturday, while James Anderson will also return to the fold after being rested at Trent Bridge. Both Ravi Bopara and Tim Bresnan have been in good form and limited overs coach Ashley Giles will have to make a decision on which one is selected as the allrounder, while James Tredwell put pressure on Graeme Swann for a start after taking three wickets against the Kiwis. In the absence of Kevin Pietersen, Joe Root will bat at four.

Australian skipper Michael Clarke  will be given until the last minute to prove that he has recovered from the back injury that forced him out of both warm-up matches, with Phil Hughes  to bat at three. The form of opener David Warner  must be a concern for the visitors at the top of the order, with the aggressive left hander dismissed for a duck against both the West Indies and India during the week. Mitchell Starc and Clink McKay are likely to lead the attack, while there is only likely to be room in the squad for one of Glenn Maxwell and Mitchell Marsh.

Australia suffered a humiliating 4-0 defeat against the old enemy in England last year and has won just two of the past nine completed ODI matches between the sides on foreign soil.

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