Chance for Brad Haddin to prove his worth
VETERAN keeper Brad Haddin will have the chance to win back his spot for the third Ashes Test when Australia takes on county side Derbyshire in a three-day game starting tonight.
The 37-year-old missed the second Test to spend time with his ill daughter.
His place in the line up at Lord's was taken by his New South Wales understudy Peter Nevill who made 45 and took seven catches, a record for a wicketkeeper in an Ashes debut.
Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Johnson and Josh Hazlewood were given time off after the second Test and won't play at Derby.
And after suffering a dizzy spell in the second innings at Lord's, opening batsman Chris Rogers has been given the all clear by doctors but is also likely to sit out the match against the team he previously captained.
That means Haddin and Nevill will both play, Australian coach Darren Lehmann saying their performances in the match would be taken into account when selectors decide on the team for the the third Test which starts on Wednedsay.
England has already named its side for Edgbaston, dropping out-of-form batsman Gary Ballance and recalling his Yorkshire teammate Jonny Bairstow.
Ballance has averaged just 16.75 in his last eight Test innings, while Bairstow has been the form batsman of the county competition this summer, making five centuries at an average of more than 100.
He said he was very pleased to be selected, the sixth time he has been called into the England Test team since making his debut four years ago.
"Consistency-wise I think I am in my best form and striking the ball well," he said. "I've been very positive at the crease this season and will try and take that into the Ashes series."
Bairstow will bat at No.5, with Ian Bell moving up one spot to three and Joe Root coming in at four.
Bell, who has averaged a meagre 20.85 in seven Tests this year, is likely to be on his last chance on what is his home wicket.
While its men's team faces a tough battle to win the Ashes, England's women confirmed their favouritism for the series against Australia with a comfortable victory in the opening match at Taunton.
After winning the toss and batting, Australia made a respectable 9-238 in the 50-over match, all-rounder Ellyse Perry leading the way with 78, her sixth consecutive half-century in ODI matches.
Perry and vice-captain Alex Blackwell put on 121 before Blackwell was run out for 58.
England's run chase got off to a bad start when Perry bowled star batter Charlotte Edwards for just 15, but 66 from Natalie Sciver and 53 from Lydia Greenway saw the hosts safely home with more than four overs to spare.
The second of three ODIs will be played in Bristol tonight.