Eoin Morgan defends Trevor Bayliss before one-day series against Australia


The Australians will be overly confident after their 4-0 demolition job in the recently completed Ashes. On one hand, the hosts will be hoping to continue their dream stint and on the other, the visitors, whose tryst with batting experiment nearly blew up in their faces, will be looking to shrug aside their struggles and approach the ODIs like they have been doing from previous year and a half.

During the Ashes, England were unbalanced by the absence of all-rounder Ben Stokes, who remains unavailable while he waits to find out if he will be charged after being arrested on suspicion of causing actual bodily harm outside a Bristol nightclub in September.

0825 hrs IST: England have won the toss and they have elected to bowl against Australia in Melbourne.

Mark Wood of England celebrates after dismissing David Warner
SCOTT BARBOUR GETTY IMAGES Mark Wood of England celebrates after dismissing David Warner

The Ashes are over, but England will have a chance to hit back against Australia as a five-match ODI series gets underway in Melbourne.

This week the vice-captain, Jos Buttler, praised Bayliss for liberating England.

"But they're a very strong team, certainly at home". However, more or less, they have been able to stay right on top due to their right team combinations. So far he has missed two ODIs against West Indies and the five Ashes Tests. On the other hand, Jason Roy who has been able to time the ball to perfection is expected to be his counterpart.

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"You got to be smart and adaptable to the conditions and try to play the type of cricket we normally play", he said.

It is unlikely that Australia will tinker with their opening combination as David Warner will be accompanied by the man-in-form Aaron Finch.

However, the Victorian's departure, and that of Marsh soon afterwards, left it to Marcus Stoinis to produce the end-of-innings pyrotechnics.

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They found it hard facing Australia's pace attack during the Test series and while Josh Hazlewood will rest from the first game, Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins will be going around, likely alongside debutant Jhye Richardson.

Probable XI: David Warner, Aaron Finch, Steve Smith (c), Travis Head, Marcus Stoinis, Tim Paine (wk), Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Jhye Richardson, Adam Zampa.

Bayliss led England to the World T20 final and to the Champions Trophy semi-final and has overseen significant improvements in the one-day game. The doctor was with me for most of that period and he made a decision to get us to the hospital and see what they could do about it.

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He said: "I know they had a hard run with weather in the Champions Trophy, they didn't even complete a full game against us, and certainly that was a struggle for them". He has worked regressively with the full fortitude to get this call and will be eyeing to add more runs after his name to keep up the faith shown by the Australian national selectors.