Meg Lanning and Heather Knight with the Women's Ashes Trophy. ©Getty Images

Match Preview: First ODI- England vs Australia

Date: 20 July 2019

The greatest rivalry in cricket is back with a bang with England set to take on Australia at home. Both teams have done a lot of hard work and now its time for some action. England is coming off a thumping double series win against West Indies and will look to continue their 14-match unbeaten streak. The Southern Stars, on the other hand, will want to continue their recent success against England. Despite a four month break from the international circuit, Meg Lanning’s side looks in good shape, ready to defend their trophy. Both teams will like to add some vital points in their kitty going forward.

 

Players To Watch Out For:

Meg Lanning

The run machine of women’s cricket, Lanning has scored the most centuries in ODIs – 12 centuries at just 72 innings. Having missed the previous edition of the tournament, the 27-year-old will certainly be keen to stamp her authority on this series. She will lead Australia’s charge from the front and attempt to start the series on a positive note. There is no doubt England will look to attack her early – after all, if she gets going, she is often hard to stop. If Australia is to take an early lead in the series, their captain hold the key.

Katherine Brunt

Katherine Brunt’s aggression, control and swing is something that England will rely on heavily. Over the years she has formed a lethal combination with Anya Shrubsole and the pair will play an important role if the home side are to curtail Australia’s top order. With 146 ODI wickets to her name, Brunt’s experience will count for much in these high pressure games. However, England will be slightly worried about whether her back will hold through the series. As the old saying goes, age is just the number and the veteran is getting better and wiser day by day.

 

Conditions:

Australia and England will face off at Leicester in a day-night game on Tuesday (July 2). Historically, the pitch at Grace Road has suited the batters, which means a high scoring match is on the cards. Most recently, England amassed 318 for 9 against West Indies. Considering the strength of both teams, totals in excess of 280 can be expected.

 

Probable XI

England: Amy Jones, Tammy Beaumont, Sarah Taylor (wk), Nat Sciver, Heather Knight (c), Danni Wyatt, Katherine Brunt, Anya Shrubsole, Kate Cross, Laura Marsh, Sophie Ecclestone

Australia: Nicole Bolton, Alyssa Healy (wk), Meg Lanning (c), Ellyse Perry, Rachael Haynes, Beth Mooney, Ashleigh Gardner, Georgia Wareham, Jess Jonassen, Megan Schutt, Tayla Vlaeminck

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