If the Australians weren’t so crap, I’d think

were trying to pull a fast one.

England’s opening match of the Champions Trophy was also the first of 26 meetings with the old enemy over the next few months. And if they weren’t currently rubbish I’d suspect the Aussies were playing games.

They say you should so what the opposition least want you to do. Well the Aussies must surely want England to open with Compton, but while he’s off racking up more meaningless county runs the next best thing they could do is play someone else they’d love into that spot. Step forward the Sherminator.

Whoever handed out the man of the match award to him at Edgbaston must be thinking along the same lines.

An innings that would have seen most other England batsmen slaughtered, especially the likes of Trott. A selfish plod that will it put 91 on the board went nowhere fast. Certainly didn’t when Trott came in. The latter should be the anchor role, while the guy that’s in should crack on. But this just seemed an exercise in staying in and confounding those critics that state, quite regularly, that Bell is never there at the end, never sees the game out.

And guess what?

Shortly after Trott’s dismissal Bell, yet again like he did in the NZ series, goes into lazy mode and gets himself out. Leaving two new blokes at the wicket with the important overs where they’re supposed to increase the scoring rate being filled by players trying to get in and score at 8 an over.

England very lucky that Bopara and Bresnan managed it.

Then lucky that Australia’s batting looks like the worst to rock up on these shores for some considerable time, if not all time. And that England somehow got some reverse swing out of these white balls.

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