England in Australia 2010-11 January 15, 2011

England's 'awkward' one-day selection issues


Andrew Strauss, the England captain, has admitted that the proximity of the World Cup poses a different set of challenges ahead of the seven-match one-day series against Australia both in terms of selection and preparation.

These upcoming matches offer both sides their last serious chance to fine-tune ahead of the global event, but conditions over the next three weeks will be very different to those presented on the subcontinent. There is also the tricky situation regarding selection because some members of England's squad for this series won't feature at the World Cup and the final 15 is named following the first ODI.

James Anderson is currently resting at home and will return for the fourth ODI at Adelaide and Stuart Broad, another certainty for World Cup selection, is recovering from the stomach strain that ruled him out of the final three Ashes Tests. Broad is on course to make the World Cup which means up to three of the players on duty in Australia will know by next week that they aren't needed in February.

"The first thing to say is it's a slightly awkward situation where you have to announce a World Cup squad after the first game of a seven-game series," Strauss said. "It makes things tricky for everyone. But the guys have an opportunity to represent their country. Whether they are part of that World Cup squad or not, what they do now will have an effect on whether they play in the future. It's very simple: if they can play, take it with both hands. If you're not part of the 15, make sure you're ready to go when it finishes."

The other testing situation for Strauss and the England management is that the conditions the team will face in Australia won't replicate the surfaces or weather of India, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka although the slow Melbourne pitch for the second Twenty20 gave a hint at what could be on the cards.

"One of the thing we're conscious of is the conditions in Australia are very different to the subcontinent," Strauss said. "Some of our practice and training has got to be tailored towards this series and some of it towards heading forward as well. That doesn't mean we're not here to win this series as that's the most important thing."

Strauss has returned to the helm following the Twenty20s were he wasn't involved and the man who captained in his absence, Paul Collingwood, continues to find himself in a serious form slump. His lack of runs in the Ashes persuaded him to retire from Test cricket and in the two T20s he made 16 and 6. However, he remains a key part of England's one-day plans, not least because of his useful bowling, and Strauss knows he has bounced back before, including four years ago in Australia with back-to-back hundreds during the triangular series.

"He's been a bit out of touch in the Test matches. But it's a very different form of the game. His record in one-day cricket over the last year has been very good," Strauss said. "He brings a lot to the side apart from his batting - but his batting's crucial to us. We're expecting him to come back strong. He's a strong character and a resilient bloke. And there have been plenty of incidences in the past where he has come back with a bang - not least four years ago."

England, though, aren't short of batting options. Kevin Pietersen wasn't part of their last 50-over success against Pakistan and both Ian Bell and Jonathan Trott have staked their claims for permanent positions. Although all three could make the World Cup squad, somebody will have to miss out in the final eleven.

"Kevin Pietersen's back in the squad and we all know what he can bring to the one-day team. Someone's got to miss out out of the batsmen," Strauss said. "It will be a tough call but I think that's a good position to be in. They all bring different attributes to their game - you have to include Paul Collingwood in the mix as well - and we have to decide what's the best use of those attributes in Australia and at the World Cup as well."

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on January 16, 2011, 13:32 GMT

    did you notice how England were once again allowed to bend the rule with subs? Collingwood (an excellent fielder) was on the field from the 31st over even though there seemed to be no injuries.

  • Khawaja on January 16, 2011, 13:25 GMT

    collingwood could probably be dropped to make way for a big hitter in the lower order...kieswetter if he is fit...with anderson and broad having injuries bresnan, woakes, shahzad, tremlett could be needed as cover...yardy and swann are adequate as spinners with kevin pieterson's off spin...england could thing of another option bowler who can control teh run flow...one wicketkeeper should be adequate...luke wright used tobe the big hitting option but he has not made any real headway...12, 13, 14, 15 should be one batsman, one fast bowler, one spinner and one big hitter

  • Deepak on January 16, 2011, 11:37 GMT

    My England XI Selection for World Cup: Andrew Strauss Steve Davies Jonathan Trott Kevin Pietersen Ian Bell Paul Collingwood Tim Bresnan Michael Yardy Graemme Swann James Anderson Stuart Broad / Steven Finn Extra players: Matt Prior Luke Wright Chris Tremlett / Chris Woakes

  • Dummy4 on January 16, 2011, 9:34 GMT

    prior is probably going tobe out and probably Tremlet will make teh squad...Bopara is really not too dependable...with the batting almost a straight pick trott and two allrounders sould complete the squad...strauss,davies, bell, pieterson,morgan,collingwood, yardy, swann,bresnan, broad, anderson,tremlett, woakes, shehzad, trott

  • Nadeem on January 16, 2011, 3:21 GMT

    Nothing is settled for any team for WC. Its going to be tough for any team to adjust in sub continent conditions.

    England can easily fail in sub continent as they did before but this time they are mentaly tough. I hope eng put up a great show in aus and in WC.

    Lets see its going to be unperdictable WC.

  • chris on January 15, 2011, 20:07 GMT

    woakes, rather than wright/tredwell

  • Charlie on January 15, 2011, 19:47 GMT

    My England WC Team and Squad - 1 Strauss* 2 Davies + 3 Bell 4 Pietersen 5 Collingwood 6 Morgan 7 Yardy 8 Bresnan 9 Broad 10 Swann 11 Anderson 12 Trott 13 Bopara 14 Prior 15 Shahzad

  • Dummy4 on January 15, 2011, 17:23 GMT

    Eng's top 6 seem to be settled well. England's real worry is number 7 spot. either yardy or wright? and number 8.. either bresnan or woakes. Swann, anderson and broad see to be sure selections...

    It depends upon how well these 4 contenders of 2 spots bat and bowl. that will decide what prime XI will be for w.cup

  • Simon on January 15, 2011, 15:51 GMT

    My 15 for the World cup thus far would be:

    Strauss Davies (wk) Bell Pieterson Colly Morgan Yardy Bresnan Broad Swann Anderson

    Prior (wk) Tremlett Trott Wright/Tredwell

  • Ryan on January 15, 2011, 13:51 GMT

    I don't think you can drop Collingwood. He has been out of form with the bat for quite a while but he offers so much more. Firstly he can field anywhere and do it supremely and secondly he can bowl good pace changers which are extremely useful when you visit the subcontinent (look at Scott Styris and Munaf Patel). Please don't include Tim Bresnan in your world cup squad no matter how well he does against Australia. He bowls poorly at the death and often drops too short. If you want to know what I mean by his poor death bowling, just go look up what happened to him against Pakistan earlier in the year.

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