No chink in England's armor despite changes

Posted: Thursday, July 12, 2012 by Sanya Michelangelo in Labels: , , , , , ,

England decided to rest off-spinner, Graeme Swann, for the remaining two matches of the one-day series against Australia, with James Tredwell added to the squad. Kent spinner, Tredwell, won the last of his five ODI caps in the World Cup in March 2011. He provided cover for Samit Patel.

Swann had complained of discomfort in his right elbow, and England gave him the opportunity to recuperate, ahead of the Test series against South Africa, which starts on July 19. "We had earmarked the fourth and fifth matches in this series as an opportunity to rest Graeme, regardless of the result at Edgbaston, as we have to consider our preparations for the Investec Test series, later this month," said national selector, Geoff Miller. "Graeme has some pain in his elbow at the moment, and we feel that an extra week's rest will allow his elbow to settle."

Meanwhile, Chris Woakes continued to deputise for Jade Dernbach, who had been ruled out of the rest of the series with a side strain. The Warwickshire seamer was in the squad for the third ODI at Edgbaston, but missed out on the chance to play on his home ground, due to the weather.

Despite the changes to the original squad, Miller believed England would have enough quality to seal a victory over their old rivals, and the current betting line agrees. "We have played some very good cricket in the last week to lead this NatWest Series 2-0, and will need to continue that form if we are to win our seventh straight series on home soil," he added.

England would wrap the series up with a victory at Chester-le-Street, on Saturday, ahead of the final contest at Old Trafford, on July 10. The latest odds indicate that a draw is the most likely result, across the series as a whole, coming in at 6/4 in the bookmaker’s window.