Australia Tour of England 2023, 1st Test, ENG vs AUS Preview and Fantasy Prediction

By Real11 - Jun 16 2023 261 Views


Australia Tour of England

1st Test: AUS vs ENG



The first test match of one of the greatest test cricket rivalries in the world, The Ashes sets to begin between England and Australia on Friday, 16 June at 03:30 PM from Edgbaston Stadium, Birmingham. Ben Stokes will lead an energise the Hosts in their quest to defeat AUS, the reigning Test champions, and clinch the cherished Ashes urn, a feat that has eluded them since 2015. At this moment, it's hard to refute the fact that ENG and AUS are excelling in the longest format, making them the top two teams for English conditions. 

Since the coach Brendon McCullum assumed this role, The Hosts have won 11 out of their last 13 Test matches, suffering only two losses – against South Africa and New Zealand. Notably, the defeat against Black Caps was a narrow one-run loss. Playing at Edgbaston in the first Test, ENG will be hoping that it works in their favour, although the historical strength of 'Fortress Edgbaston' has waned due to defeats against NZ in 2021 and AUS in 2019.

Word has it that ENG has requested a flat pitch that suits their fast-scoring style of play, fondly referred to as 'Bazball' by fans and observers, in honour of their current head coach. If that does happen, the Ben Stokes-led English side's batting will be worth watching. Pat Cummins-led AUS couldn’t have hoped to come into the Ashes in better form. AUS just won the Test Championship Series final at the Oval against India and is flying high in confidence. Moreover, the Aussies are now well acquainted with the conditions.

With Ben Stokes as captain and Brendon McCullum as a coach, ENG has undergone a significant shift in its playing style. The Hosts have achieved a remarkable run rate of 4.85 runs over the last year, the highest ever recorded in Test cricket history. ENG and AUS, the two oldest cricketing nations, have faced off in a total of 356 Tests. Out of these, ENG emerged victorious in 110 matches, while AUS triumphed in 150 matches. In the history of the Ashes, both sides have played 72 series - AUS has won 34 of those while ENG has clinched 32.


Match Details

Match: Australia tour of England, 1st Test, ENG vs AUS

Date: Jun 16, Fri – Jun 20, Tue

Time: 03:30 PM 

Venue: Edgbaston Stadium, Birmingham, England


Pitch & Weather Report

This track is usually good for batting, and a flat surface is expected for the first Ashes Test. Expect plenty of runs to be scored in the first two and a half days. However, the weather is expected to be cloudy from the third day onwards of the game, which will help the fast bowlers get sufficient movement and trouble the batters. Spinners will also come into play in the last two days.

The average score batting first at this venue is 312. The highest team score at the venue is 710-7 (Dec.) by the Hosts ENG in 2011 versus India. The team batting first in this Test will be looking to post a total in the range of 400+ runs. Interestingly, 15 matches have been drawn on this track out of the 54 Tests played. The touring sides have won only 10 matches here. Out of the 54 Test played at Edgbaston, 18 have been won by the team batting first and 21 by the side batting second.

The maximum temperature will remain at 23°C, with a low of 13°C with 83% humidity, and a slow wind speed of 05-08 Km/hr for the first Ashes test between England and Australia, Jun 16, Fri – Jun 20, Tue. The skies over Edgbaston be cloudy, and we expect little showers during the game on the last two days of the match.


ENG vs AUS Squads

ENG: Ben Stokes (c), James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow, Stuart Broad, Harry Brook, Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, Dan Lawrence, Moeen Ali, Ollie Pope, Matthew Potts, Ollie Robinson, Joe Root, Josh Tongue, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood.

AUS: Pat Cummins (c), Steve Smith (VC), Scott Boland, Alex Carey (wk), Cameron Green, Marcus Harris, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Josh Inglis (wk), Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Todd Murphy, Jimmy Peirson (wk), Matt Renshaw, Mitchell Starc, David Warner


ENG vs AUS: Probable XIs

ENG: Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, Ollie Pope, Joe Root, Harry Brook, Ben Stokes (C), Jonny Bairstow (Wk), Stuart Broad, James Anderson, Ollie Robinson/Mark Wood, Moeen Ali

AUS: Pat Cummins (C), David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Alex Carey (Wk), Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood /Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Scott Boland


Match Prediction

The Visitors retained the Ashes in 2021 in the Hosts England after the series ended in a draw. With skipper Ben Stokes in charge, The third-placed test side ENG's formidable team is determined to retaliate and overcome their previous season's setback. While ENG and AUS bot boast middle-order strength, they have vulnerabilities in their top order. Even on this flat, both sides remain optimistic about their chances of capturing 20 wickets. 

Draws hold no appeal for the English skipper, and the Hosts are expected to adopt an aggressive approach, even at the risk of losing, in their quest for a win. ENG has enjoyed significantly more time to recuperate compared to their opponents, whose recent Test Championship duties concluded less than a week ago.

These seemingly minor factors could play a crucial role in what is anticipated to be an exceedingly tight contest of the game. We think the current test Champions might initially struggle to cope with ENG's highly aggressive approach in both batting and bowling at Edgbaston, where the home crowd will be boisterously cheering their team on. Therefore, backing ENG to draw first blood would be the sensible choice.


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