Shane Warne has already started the Ashes mind games. The retired Australian spinner has recently criticised England captain Alistair Cook, and while unduly harsh he does have a point. With Cook struggling with a back injury we take a look at some of the English players who may have to carry the team in his absence.
There can be no denying that Ian Bell was England’s key figure in their victorious summer. The Warwickshire batter salvaged so many England innings, scoring 562 in total to help his side to the urn. Bell is priced at 9/2 with Betfair to top-score the upcoming series and England will need Bell to be at his batting best. Bell is one of the most competent batters at the crease, not only scoring runs but managing to avoid getting out, which can have such a demoralizing effect on bowling attacks. Bell truly is England’s key man.
One of the most naturally gifted batters in the world, KP is going to need to recapture his best form in order to aid England to victory. He was England’s second highest run scorer in the summer and is second favourite in the betting odds with Betfair to top-score for England. KP’s explosive batting style can really put the Australian bowlers under the cosh and if he can iron out his unnecessary mistakes then he can smash England to victory.
The loveable spinner took the most wickets in the summer series with 26 and is 11/4 with Betfair to take the most wickets this time around. As well as his bowling ability, Swann is the life and soul of the team. While captain Cook is the brain, Swann is certainly the heart, always giving his all for his country. Swann is a master of sledging and will be hoping to unnerve the Aussies this winter with a constant barrage of friendly abuse.