Australia claimed a dominant win to go 1-0 up in the Ashes, and the series now moves to Adelaide for the 2nd Test starting on Thursday. As always, Mr. Cricket has you covered with a full preview and betting tips for the day/night clash below.
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Ashes 2nd Test Betting Tips
Australia vs England, Adelaide Oval, Thursday 16th December, 3.00pm (AEDT)
1st Test Summary
Australia were pretty dominant from start to finish in the 1st Test. Bowling first, they rolled England for 147 on the back of a brilliant five wicket haul from new captain Pat Cummins. Cummins was the lynchpin but all of the Australian bowlers were solid in the opening innings, with only Josh Hazlewood going at over three runs per over.
The Aussies backed that up with a score of 425 in their opening innings, led by a gritty 155 run partnership between David Warner (94) and Marnus Labuschagne (74). At one point, it looked like the English might have fought their way back into the game with four quick wickets which left Australia at 5/195, however, Travis Head had other ideas. Batting with the tail, Head smashed 152 off just 148 balls to lead the Aussies to a commanding position.
There was a small glimmer of a fightback from the Poms in their 2nd innings as Dawis Malan and Joe Root put on 162 for the 3rd wicket. Once that partnership was broken, however, it was all she wrote, as the Aussies steamrolled their opponents, taking 8/74 to close out the innings before making the 20 runs required to win the Test match.
Confirmed XI: David Warner, Marcus Harris, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Cameron Green, Alex Carey, Michael Neser, Mitch Starc, Jhye Richardson, Nathan Lyon
Team news for the Australians is mostly focused on two spots in the line-up. Josh Hazlewood suffered a side strain in the 1st Test so will be out for Adelaide. The most likely replacement seems to be West Australian Jyhe Richardson, although Michael Neser is another paceman the selectors could opt for.
David Warner is the other injury concern for the Aussies. The opener barely fielded in the 2nd innings and therefore was unable to open the batting for Australia, with Alex Carey instead filling in. Warner is a walk up starter if fit, but if not, the most likely replacement seems to be Usman Khawaja or potentially New South Welshman Bryce Street, who smashed a hundred in the recent Australia A game.
Note: Pat Cummins was a late withdrawal from the team on Thursday morning. He'll be replaced by debutant Michael Neser while Steve Smith will captain.
Likely XI: Rory Burns, Haseeb Hameed, Dawid Malan, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Ollie Pope, Jos Buttler, Chris Woakes, Ollie Robinson, Stuart Broad, Jimmy Anderson
Although they were pretty poor, I'm not really sure if there's any changes to be made in the English top six outside of a potential Ben Stokes injury. I think the two openers get one more crack, Malan was solid in the 2nd innings and Pope looks like a batsman who is actually suited to Australian pitches.
Their will certainly be changes amongst their bowling ranks. Ollie Robinson will certainly start if he is fit, but has a slight injury cloud over his head. Jack Leach was deplorable at the Gabba, and I think it's a high possibility that England go with four pacemen here, as Ben Stokes might not be able to bowl. Anderson, Broad and Robinson have to play with the pink ball, and I think the English selectors really like what Woakes gives them in terms of flexibility with both bat and ball.
I think the English will be more competitve in this Test. The pink ball and the day/night factor suits their bowlers much more and will probably feel more like home to their batsmen. Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad seem like they are both built for day/night cricket and the absence of Josh Hazlewood will be a big boost to their chances.
Having said that, I just don't trust their batting line-up anywhere near enough to pick them to win this Test. Australia have proven stars in their top five that have played well on Australian soil before. Plus the scintilating form of Travis Head at the moment is just an added bonus. Outside of a monumental collapse, I just can't see how the Aussies lose this Test.
David Warner has played eight Tests at Adelaide Oval and has smashed 1045 runs at a ridiculous average of 80.83. However, against England at the Adelaide Oval that average drops to 43.25. In his only day/night Test against the Poms, he was dismissed by Chris Woakes in both innings for 47 and 14. You can bet your bottom dollar that his nemesis Stuart Broad will be coming from around the wicket from ball one, something Warner has really struggled with historically.
Chris Woakes was fatastic in his only game at Adelaide Oval, particularly in the 2nd innings under lights when he picked up 4/36 off 16 overs. He can swing the ball both ways, which is super important at Adelaide Oval. All the hype is around Broad and Anderson coming back into the side, but I think there is value in Woakes to top the wicket taker list for the Poms.
Woakes Top ENG Wicket Taker