England skipper Joe Root on Thursday won the toss and opted to bowl first against Australia in the third match of the five-match Ashes Test series at Headingley, Leeds. The start was delayed due to rain.
For Australia, Marcus Harris came in for Cameron Bancroft, whereas James Pattinson replaced Peter Siddle. Meanwhile, England are unchanged.
“We’re going to bowl first. Looks at the conditions, they’re more suited for bowling. It’ll be good for a long time. There’s some moisture in the wicket too, and there is something in the wicket early on at least. We’re going in with the same team. Jason Roy has done a number of tests for the concussion and he’s perfectly fine. Player safety is paramount, and in the light of what happened last week, we have to be sure that he is fit to play. You want to be part of these big moments, and in big series like the Ashes, you have to be in the middle of the action and we are hoping to end this Test match at 1-1,” said England skipper Root after winning the toss.
Australia captain Tim Paine said: “I was hoping he won the toss (laughs), but we were going to have a bat. The wicket looks quite dry underneath. Hoping to get a first-innings total, and hoping we can get Lyon into the game on Day 4 and 5. Marcus Harris comes in for (Cameron) Bancroft and (James) Pattinson comes in for (Peter) Siddle. (Steve) Smith is a huge miss, and it’s a loss for your team, and it’s upto our senior players to set it up in the absence of Smith. It takes the entire team to win the Ashes series and we have to show it out here. Siddle has been bowling well for us, but he’s not getting any younger.”
After winning the first match of the series, Australia lead 1-0 as the second match ended in a draw.
Here are the Playing XIs of both the teams:
Australia: David Warner, Marcus Harris, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Travis Head, Matthew Wade, Tim Paine (captain/wicketkeeper), James Pattinson, Pat Cummins, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood
England: Rory Burns, Jason Roy, Joe Root (captain), Joe Denly, Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow (wicketkeeper), Jos Buttler, Chris Woakes, Jofra Archer, Stuart Broad, Jack Leach