Joe Root vowed not to make any "shotgun" decisions over team selection for the second Ashes Test after England were humbled by Australia in the Edgbaston opener.

England had Australia 122-8 in the first innings and took a 90-run lead into the second but, thanks largely to back-to-back centuries from Steve Smith, eventually slipped to a 251-run defeat.

Several players therefore find their place in the team at Lord's under threat, with Moeen Ali in particular coming in for criticism after making scores of 0 and 4 with the bat and match figures of 3-172 with the ball.

The decision to play James Anderson has also been scrutinised, with England's record wicket-taker suffering a calf injury on the opening morning having suffered from a similar issue prior to the Test.

Likely replacement Jofra Archer has been struggling with a side strain and will need to prove his fitness in the interim period.

But captain Root insists due diligence will be given in regards team selection.

"We have to go about it [deciding if Archer plays] in a very calculated manner as we did with Jimmy," he said. 

"If someone is fit to play and it's a unanimous decision then you have to put trust in that because it's a recurring – well not a recurring injury – but because it's the same area in general, if you like, it's easy to say or ask questions about the process and decision-making going into it. 

"With Jofra it's a slightly different situation where he'll have played a lot more cricket in between and we'll have a clearer indication of where he's at, turn up at Lord's and make sure there are no shotgun decisions.

"It's very easy to make emotional decisions right now. We're in a lucky position that there's time between the two Test matches. We've got to make sure we're taking all the information very clear about how we want to approach the next game and take a call from there."

On Moeen's place in the team, Root added: "I think with Mo you have to remember how threatening he can be and what an asset to this team he has been in the past. 

"When he's been written off before he comes back stronger, particularly in English conditions. He'll be disappointed with how yesterday went and how the game has gone but he'll dust himself off and come back.

"As I said we've got to make sure we're clear on how we approach the next game and not make too many emotional decisions going into Lord's and sit down as a selection panel and go from there."

Australia's 251-run victory in the first Ashes Test raised many intriguing questions.

Will an injured James Anderson feature again during the series? Should an out-of-form Moeen Ali retain his place? Is there any way to get Steve Smith out - and will the tourists change a winning XI?

It is not just the players who are in the spotlight, however. The umpires' performances are also closely scrutinised - and it was a tough outing for on-field duo Aleem Dar and Joel Wilson in Birmingham.

There were more reviews than at a book club meeting. The two men in the middle had a rocky start to proceedings on the opening day, with the use of technology highlighting seven errors.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has already announced the list of officials who will stand throughout the series, with Dar on duty at Lord's next and Wilson back for the third Test, which takes place at Headingley. For both fixtures, the duo will be working in conjunction with Chris Gaffaney, who was busy in his role as third umpire for the opening game.

Following the game, we look back at the long list of successful reviews at Edgbaston.

 

DAY ONE

1.1 overs: David Warner is given not out by Dar despite getting a thin edge down the leg side from Stuart Broad. In fairness to Dar, wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow was the only England player to appeal with any gusto.

14.2 overs: Umpire Wilson turns down a vociferous appeal after England think they have Usman Khawaja caught behind off Chris Woakes. On this occasion, the hosts' review is successful as UltraEdge picks up the finest of edges from Australia's number three.

33.5 overs: England are joyous as Smith pads up to a Broad delivery and Dar raises the finger. The batsman reviews almost immediately and his decision is justified, with HawkEye showing the ball missing off stump.

34.6 overs: Wilson turns down an lbw appeal from Woakes against Matthew Wade. England review and another on-field decision is overturned.

39.6 overs: Dar decides James Pattinson is lbw to Broad. The batsman opts against a review, perhaps due to the presence of key man Smith at the other end, but replays again show the ball would have missed leg stump.

46.1 overs: Peter Siddle is lbw to Woakes, according to Wilson. A review proves the umpire wrong as a massive inside edge is revealed.

DAY TWO

20.6 overs: Australia thought they had England captain Root caught behind off the bowling of Pattinson for nine. Wilson agreed with their vehement appeal, but replays showed the only piece of wood the ball had clipped was off stump, with somehow the bail remaining in place. 

33.2 overs: Root again, this time on 14. The right-hander was given out lbw by Dar, Siddle the bowler as the ball cut back in. However, it had also taken a sizeable deflection off the bat, giving the skipper a reprieve. He went on to make 57 in England's total of 374.

DAY THREE

2.6 overs: For the second time in the match, England needed the help of DRS to dismiss Warner. The opener was unable to withdraw his bat in time from a Broad delivery from around the wicket, leading to an edge through to wicketkeeper Bairstow. Wilson was not convinced (and neither was Broad initially) but UltraEdge quickly showed up the contact.

DAY FOUR

84.2 overs: Broad felt he had Wade lbw after England had taken the second new ball - and Wilson originally agreed. However, he was forced to reverse his initial call as the ball was shown to be going over the top.

DAY FIVE

12.6 overs: Wilson must have been a little worried when Root immediately reviewed an lbw call, despite there clearly being no bat involved. Indeed, the footage revealed why - the delivery from Pattinson was missing leg stump...and by some distance, too.

16.4 overs: The same umpire-batsman combination were involved again in the morning session, this time Wilson's finger going up when Root was struck on the pad by Siddle. The batsman had a smile on his face as he quickly made a 'T' signal with his arms, knowing very well that an initial edge would save him.

Joe Root refused to blame a Cricket World Cup hangover for England's disappointing defeat in the first Ashes Test against Australia.

The opening day at Edgbaston came just 18 days after an amazing Lord's final against New Zealand, as England became world champions following a dramatic Super Over.

Six members of that ODI side featured in Birmingham, although their stand-out performers against Australia, Stuart Broad – who took 5-86 in the first innings – and centurion Rory Burns, were not among them.

Root, however, instead blamed an inability to capitalise on an early position of strength, having reduced Australia to 122-8 in their first innings, for England's 251-run defeat.

"No, I think that [World Cup fatigue] is a bit of an excuse if I'm being honest," he said at the post-match presentation. 

"As I said we played some good stuff throughout the game, we just didn't do it for long enough and we didn't take our chance right at the start of the game when we had them in that position."

The returning Steve Smith proved the difference by becoming just the third Australian to make centuries in each innings of an away Ashes Test.

England were also hindered by a calf injury sustained by James Anderson, which Root felt had an influence on the outcome of the Test.

"Yeah it was two brilliant innings [from Steve Smith], we have to keep working hard on getting him out," Root added.

"It was hard losing Jimmy early on, it becomes a balancing act, these things happen in cricket."

Anderson's selection was a dilemma for England before the Test with the seamer having sustained a similar injury last month, but Root defended the decision to select their all-time leading wicket taker.

"It was a group decision in terms of selection, he passed a fitness test [and] it's just one of those freak things that can happen in cricket," Root said.

Australia completed a resounding 251-run victory on day five to seal the opening Ashes Test as Nathan Lyon tormented sorry England with a sublime six-for at Edgbaston.

The heroics of centurions Steve Smith and Matthew Wade a day previous set England a near-impossible 398 target and their only realistic chance of avoiding defeat was to bat out the day for a draw.

But predictions that a wearing day-five pitch would be suited to the spinning skills of Lyon bore fruit and he finished with 6-49, becoming the fourth Australian to rack up 350 Test wickets in the process.

Pat Cummins added 4-32 and now has 100 Test wickets as England played like the proverbial deer in the headlights to fall behind in the five-match series.

The inquest will now begin for England, who had Australia at 122-8 in the first innings before the first of Smith's centuries brought the tourists back into the match.

Even still, England held a 90-run lead heading into the second innings but their inability to remove Smith proved costly in an enthralling contest and the Australians now have the psychological edge with their star batsman in phenomenal form.

Tim Paine's side head to Lord's with a 1-0 lead having ended an 18-year wait for an Edgbaston win in any format, while it marks just England's second defeat in 15 Test matches at the venue.

England would have been relatively content with the opening hour despite the loss of first-innings centurion Rory Burns (11) when a short one from Cummins was gloved to Lyon at gully.

Jason Roy (28) and Joe Root made 41 for the second wicket, only for the former to make a complete hash of attacking a Lyon delivery that turned through the gap.

Lyon quickly added Joe Denly (11), who wastefully reviewed when there was clearly a nick on a looped one to Cameron Bancroft at short leg, and the same combination snared the crucial wicket of Root – who England really needed to bat most of the day – with the fielder snaffling a sharp take.

It left England 85-4 by lunch and the situation did not improve in the afternoon session, Cummins ripping up Jos Buttler's off stump before Jonny Bairstow gloved the same man to the slips.

When Ben Stokes edged Lyon behind to gleeful Australia captain Paine the writing was on the wall.

Chris Woakes tried to delay the inevitable with an enterprising 37, but the out-of-sorts Moeen Ali and Stuart Broad had no answer to Lyon and Cummins accounted for Woakes with a short delivery to bring an end to proceedings.


LYON ROARS INTO ELITE AUSSIE CLUB

Lyon joined an elite club when it comes to Test scalps for Australia - only Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath and Dennis Lillee have also made it to 350.

All the focus pre-match was on the tourists' pace attack and which options they may use to try and cut down England. While the trio selected played their part throughout the Test, it was instead the one frontline spin bowler who was left to take centre stage on a worn surface.


STICK OR TWIST? NEITHER HELP OUT ENGLAND

The home side must be wondering where it all went wrong, having reduced Australia to 122-8 on the opening day. Coming to the ground on Monday, they always faced a tough order to survive and keep the series level heading to Lord's.

Their top-order batsmen attempted different methods to cope with Lyon, though none worked for a sustained period. Roy's adventurous march down the pitch will draw criticism, but even the reliable Root succumbed when choosing the more defensive approach. With issues over the form and fitness of key players, England's selectors have plenty to ponder in the break between games.


MOMENT OF THE DAY

The longevity of Root's innings was always likely to be crucial to England's chances of survival. But the skipper was sent on his way after a fine pouch by Bancroft shortly before lunch. Had Root managed to hold on England may have still maintained some hope of a draw, but Australia's celebrations told a story in itself.


KEY OPTA FACTS:

- Lyon has become only the seventh spinner ever to record 350 Test wickets.
- Cummins has now taken 100 Test wickets (21 matches); no Australian bowler has got there faster since 1937 (Bill O'Reilly - 20).
- No bowler has dismissed Root more often in Tests than Lyon (five).
- Denly has scored more than 23 just once in eight Test innings for England.
- Buttler has failed to score more than five runs in four of his eight Test innings in 2019.

Nathan Lyon struck three times as Australia boosted their chances of victory in the first Ashes Test by reducing England to 85-4 by lunch on day five.

The hosts resumed at Edgbaston on 13-0 chasing an unlikely 398 in the fourth innings, with a more realistic aim being to bat out the day to salvage a draw.

However, their survival hopes were hurt when they lost first-innings centurion Rory Burns for 11, the opener getting into a terrible tangle when trying to deal with a short delivery from Pat Cummins, leading to the ball taking the glove and looping kindly to Lyon at gully.

Captain Joe Root joined Jason Roy (28) and the pair added 41 for the second wicket before the latter perished trying to take the positive approach to Lyon, the ball turning through the gap between bat and pad to hit middle stump after he had given the off-spinner the charge.

Lyon then combined with Cameron Bancroft to dismiss Joe Denly (11) and Root before the interval, both right-handers pouched at short leg following inside edges.

Root had twice used the review system to overturn lbw decisions given by umpire Joel Wilson, though there was no doubt over his dismissal as Bancroft snared a sharp chance straight off the bat to send England's skipper on his way for 28.

Jos Buttler ended the session unbeaten on one with Ben Stokes still yet to get off the mark, the pair facing a monumental task as England aim to avoid falling 1-0 behind in the five-match series.

Rory Burns closed in on a maiden Test century and shared a valuable partnership of 132 with skipper Joe Root as England seized the upper hand on day two of the first Ashes Test at Edgbaston.

England's struggles at the top of the order in recent times have been well documented, but Burns and Root each survived early scares to lay a strong platform for their side, contributing 82 not out and 57 respectively.

Steve Smith's spectacular 144 had lifted Australia from 122-8 to 284 all out on day one. However, the momentum had undoubtedly swung back in England's favour by the time tea was taken on Friday.

Burns, who averaged 22 from seven Tests prior to this match, and Root both enjoyed moments of good fortune prior to lunch. The former should have been given out lbw to Nathan Lyon for 21, with Australia failing to call for a review, while Root survived on nine when a James Pattinson delivery clipped his off stump but did not dislodge a bail.

England's captain - in his first Test since moving back up to number three - also overturned a leg-before decision that had gone in favour of Peter Siddle early in the afternoon, replays showing an inside edge that provided further frustration for Australia.

Although Pattinson impressed in the morning session and had Jason Roy caught at second slip for 10, a pace attack lacking Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood struggled to make much of an impact thereafter.

Siddle took a fine reflex catch off his own bowling to dismiss Root just as the batsman was operating with increasing fluency, but Burns held firm despite some particularly nervy moments against off-spinner Lyon, who extracted plenty of turn.

At tea, Burns was two shy of matching his highest Test score and had Joe Denly (nine not out) for company, with England 114 behind and eyeing a significant first-innings lead.

England only lost one wicket on a tense second morning in the first Ashes Test, but Rory Burns and Joe Root survived major let-offs prior to lunch.

After resuming on 10 without loss in reply to Australia's 284 all out, which owed much to Steve Smith's spectacular 144, the hosts saw Jason Roy depart for 10 but avoided any further setbacks as they battled to 71-1.

Australia could feel somewhat hard done by, however, given Burns should have been adjudged lbw for 22 and England captain Root had a lucky escape on nine when a delivery from James Pattinson clipped his off stump but failed to dislodge a bail.

At the interval, Burns was unbeaten on 41, having played some attractive strokes in an encouraging innings, while the ultra-cautious Root had 11 to his name from 57 balls in his first innings since moving back to number three.

Pattinson, playing his first Test since February 2016 after a horrendous run of injury problems, was comfortably the pick of Australia's pacemen on Friday morning and twice found Roy's edge before having the opener caught by Smith at second slip.

Burns looked far more comfortable than his Surrey team-mate, although his progress was not entirely assured.

The left-hander took a glancing blow to the helmet from Pat Cummins and was then fortunate to survive when an appeal for lbw from Nathan Lyon, who found plenty of early turn, was turned down and Australia failed to call for a review despite Hawk-Eye showing the ball would have crashed into leg stump.

Root was then given out caught behind off the impressive Pattinson, but he reviewed successfully as it became apparent the ball had brushed off stump rather than his bat.

Joe Root baulked at the suggestion he is under less pressure to deliver an Ashes series win because of his part in England's Cricket World Cup victory.

England and Australia resume their famous rivalry at Edgbaston on Thursday, the first of five Tests in a packed seven-week schedule as the hosts aim to build upon their breathless triumph over New Zealand at Lord's with another memorable success in the longest format.

Root was England's leading runs scorer as Eoin Morgan's men lifted the trophy, comfortably dispatching Australia in the semi-finals en route to glory.

But the 28-year-old is captain once again for Test duties, as he was when Australia took back possession of the urn with a 4-0 win on home soil 18 months ago.

"I think if you speak to anyone that's captained England and is on the verge of an Ashes series… to say that it doesn't mean as much as any other event, I don't think any of them would agree. It's huge," Root, who will step up again to the crucial number three position in England's brittle top order, told a pre-match news conference.

"Cricket in this country is at an all-time high and probably has interest it's not had for a long time. We've got an opportunity as a team to make this summer a very memorable one."

It is a joust limited-overs specialist Morgan will watch from afar.

Root spoke warmly of the Irishman's influence on his leadership of the Test team as he seeks to plot a similarly defining triumph.

"I'm sure he's still celebrating somewhere, to be honest," Root grinned. "He's obviously desperate for us to do well.

"He's been great with me in terms of helping me find my feet as a captain and someone I will always will look up to.

"He's a great man and a great leader. He'll be as supportive as anyone watching on from wherever he is – hopefully with a glass of red somewhere."

Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes return to the England side after sitting out last week's topsy-turvy Test win over Ireland – the duo prescribed rest after showing nerves of steel to guide England towards and through the super-over finale versus New Zealand.

"When you look back at that final and everything that it threw at the group who played in it, those are experiences you can hold with you for ever," Root said, acknowledging the lingering benefit such exploits could have over the coming weeks.

"For people like Jos and Ben, who spent a long period out there under pressure, it must make you think differently and it'll be interesting to see that unfold throughout this series.

"It can only be positive to have two senior players perform for a long period of time under the biggest scrutiny and pressure in the white-ball format.

"They've got a chance now to take that into the red-ball stuff and into this series."

England captain Joe Root explained his increasing ease with being the team's leader motivated his decision to move up to number three in the batting order for the Ashes.

Root will come in at first wicket down as England look to wrest control of the urn from rivals Australia over the next seven weeks.

There has long been a clamour for the 28-year-old to take on that high-pressure role, given his status as the most gifted batsman in a team that frequently loses cheap wickets at the top of the order.

Having captained England to a 4-0 defeat in Australia 18 months ago, Root's growing assurance as skipper helped persuade him to take the plunge.

"I think it's important that we spread the experience out. It gives me the opportunity to lead from the front as well," he told a pre-match news conference on the eve of the highly anticipated series opener at Edgbaston.

"I also feel now that I'm in a place where I've got my head around dealing with the captaincy and my batting – being able to separate the two.

"Hopefully it's an opportunity for me to make an impact at the top of the order."

Joe Denly came into the England side as an opener for this year's tour of the West Indies, meaning he will take on his third batting spot of a four-Test career in Birmingham to accommodate Root's elevation.

Jason Roy backed up his blistering World Cup form with a half-century on his debut in the longest format against Ireland at Lord's last week, but Surrey colleague Rory Burns – himself a Test debutant in Sri Lanka last November – has failed to reach 30 in his past six international innings.

As a collective, it does not present the most intimidating prospect to Australia's much-vaunted seam attack, but Root is confident of their prospects and placed an onus on Roy to take the attack to the tourists.

"I think it's a very exciting top order," he said. "I want Jason to go out and play in his own manner.

"Naturally he has the ability to put any bowler under pressure at any given time. That's very exciting.

"The most import at thing is that as a group we keep things very simple and are focused and continually work hard on those big partnerships that contribute to winning."

Another World Cup hero, Jofra Archer, must wait for his Test bow after James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Chris Woakes were named as England's frontline seam attack.

The 24-year-old fast bowler was England's leading wicket-taker but needed a post-tournament lay off due to a side strain, with Root keen not to risk his fitness as the games come thick and fast in a compressed five-match series.

"Jofra's obviously coming back from quite a serious injury," he said.

"We looked at the conditions and we made a decision on what we thought was best going to take 20 wickets here.

"It also allows him time to get absolutely ready and fit and make sure his workload is up and ready to go for later on in the series if he needs to make an impact."

Australia have named former captain Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft together in their squad for the first time since the trio served suspensions for their part in a ball-tampering scandal.

Smith's successor Tim Paine used his briefing to talk up the high standards of behaviour set in his regime – albeit by mistakenly attributing a quote to Winston Churchill – but Root feels such matters should not be a focus of the England dressing room.  

"We'll see how that unfolds over the course of this series, but their behaviour doesn't really concern me," he added.

"My concern is we go about things in our own way, we know what we're about as a side and how we want to go about things. 

"It's really important we look after that and don't get too wrapped up in how they play their cricket."

England captain Joe Root will be promoted up the order to bat at three in the first Ashes Test, with Joe Denly confirming he will drop down to four against Australia.

Top-order woe has been a theme of England's recent Tests and Trevor Bayliss' side will bid to remedy the issue by moving Root back up the order at Edgbaston.

Root averages 40.47 in 40 innings at number three, compared to 48 in 60 at his preferred position of number four, which will now be occupied by Denly.

"Joe Root will be batting at three and I'll be batting at four," Denly confirmed at a news conference on Tuesday.

"[I'm] very excited. I wasn't too fussed really where I was batting. It's just great to be in that starting XI. I've batted at four before playing for Kent and throughout my career.

"For me, it wasn't really a big issue. Just happy to be playing.

"I think Rooty just wants to get involved in the game and get up there and get out in the middle and get, hopefully, a lot of runs.

"I don't think there's anything more to it than that. Looking forward to seeing how it goes."

There had been suggestions that Bayliss was the one bidding to convince Root to come in earlier, though Denly revealed it was the skipper who had informed him of his wish to make the switch.

"He rang me the other day and just told me that he wanted to bat three and wanted me to go four. As simple as that," Denly added.

The move, which would not affect likely openers Rory Burns and Jason Roy's slots, was blasted by former England batsman Mark Butcher.

"Joe Denly, who, to me, along with Rory Burns, are the two most vulnerable players at the top of the order," he told ESPN's Switch Hit podcast.

"If they get off to a bad start first two Test matches, don't make any runs, the calls for one or both of them to go would be pretty loud.

"You're putting Joe in a position that there wasn't a problem with. 

"I'm not having it, it's terrible, it's a bad call."

England and Australia will spend the next seven weeks as fierce rivals with the Ashes on the line.

The return from suspension of three Australia star batsmen means the visitors are back up to full strength as they chase a first Test series win in England for 18 years.

The triumphant 2001 side was loaded with all-time greats including Steve and Mark Waugh, Shane Warne, Ricky Ponting, Glenn McGrath and Adam Gilchrist.

Few of the England team of the day would have earned a place in Australia's side, such was the absurd strength of the tourists' squad.

However, the gap has closed considerably in the years since, and merging the teams for a combined Ashes XI in 2019 would test the judgment of any selector.

Here is a look at how such a team might look, with grovelling apologies to the strong contenders who missed the cut.


Cameron Bancroft (Australia)

Edgbaston will have a welcome waiting for the man who used sandpaper to tamper with the ball during Australia's Test with South Africa at Newlands last year. Bancroft has the runs for Durham this year to justify his return to Australia's ranks on form, even if many might feel uneasy about his presence after serving a nine-month ban. It could be touch and go whether he opens or bats in the middle order, but he gets the nod for this XI on the basis of England being in an opener crisis.

David Warner (Australia)

The brains behind the Newlands plot is also back in the Test arena. Warner is a mighty batsman, and nobody would question his ability. He comes into the Ashes off a fine World Cup performance, and his wicket will be a prized one within the England ranks. Described in one newspaper verdict of sandpapergate as "the most hated man in cricket", Warner is the man the home crowds would love to see fail, even if privately they would happily have him on their side.

Steve Smith (Australia)

Culled as captain, and banned along with Warner for a year, Smith did nothing to prevent Bancroft and Warner's actions and he will be braced for a barrage of flak during the Ashes. He has the batting chops and the temperament to handle sledging from the stands, however. Smith is the finest middle-order batsman of his generation, a rock of Australia's team and, past mistakes notwithstanding, a de facto leader.

Joe Root (England, captain)

If questions are asked of England's batting line-up, England's skipper usually finds an answer. He may need to provide the glue to bond together several unstable innings over the coming weeks, and there are few more accomplished anchor batsmen in world cricket. His team are the bookmakers' favourites to take the urn, with Root's contribution expected to be pivotal.

Jonny Bairstow (England)

A galvanising force behind England's glorious World Cup campaign, Bairstow has produced worrisome form in the longest format and went for a pair against Ireland. He averages 25.83 in 10 Tests over the past 12 months, dragging down his overall batting average. The Ashes might bring the best out of the Yorkshireman.

Ben Stokes (England)

Stokes will hope to enjoy August 2019 more than August 2018, when he faced the stress of a crown court trial on a charge of affray. Stokes cleared his name and has moved on, reinstated for the Ashes as England's vice-captain and hailed a national hero after his World Cup exploits. Many have crumbled in the face of comparisons to Ian Botham but Stokes thrives on the all-rounder role and could far surpass Beefy's achievements before his career is out. A man who seems made for an Ashes series.

Jos Buttler (England, wicketkeeper)

Tim Paine captains Australia, as well as keeping wicket, because in both senses he is considered a safe pair of hands. But Buttler gets the stumps role here, his explosive batting a tremendous complement to his skill with the gloves. Buttler has come on as a Test cricketer in the last year, as well as being a key component of the white-ball team that many expect him to captain before long. He gives back the Test vice-captaincy to Stokes for this series, but is unlikely to mind.

Pat Cummins (Australia)

Rated by the ICC as the world's number one bowler, Cummins has taken wickets at a prolific rate over the past couple of years. He would earn his place on that basis alone, but Cummins can bat too and made three scores in the forties in the last Ashes series. Years of injury woe are behind him, with the tall paceman capable of wreaking havoc in this series.

Jofra Archer (England)

Here's the wild card. Archer is launching his Test career in the Ashes but has already demonstrated he is a swimmer when tossed in at the deep end. The Barbados-born fast bowler enjoyed a terrific World Cup, defying a painful side strain to emerge as a star of the tournament. The 24-year-old looks like the man England have been waiting for, as the established Anderson-Broad axis enters its twilight days. He should thrive, and play in many of these series.

Nathan Lyon (Australia)

England have worries in the spin department when it comes to Tests, with neither Moeen Ali nor Adil Rashid establishing themselves as reliable wicket-taking slow bowlers at this level. Lyon's average is comfortably better than both England men, and with 86 Tests behind him the one-time Adelaide Oval groundsman has come a long way in the game. He has pouched 343 Test wickets and, regardless of conditions that should favour the seamers, will fancy taking more victims on this tour. A shoo-in for an Ashes dream team.

James Anderson (England)

This will be an Ashes farewell, surely, for Anderson. Few would doubt his capacity to go out in style, with the 37-year-old bidding to add to 575 Test wickets, 104 of which have accounted for Australians. He has succeeded McGrath as the preeminent paceman in the ongoing story of the Ashes, with few seamers capable of matching the craft of the man from Burnley. A late-summer Ashes, after the British heatwave, with plenty of cloud cover likely, could have been designed for Anderson.

England's Test win over Ireland at Lord's was not a fair contest between bat and ball due to a substandard Lord's playing surface, according to home captain Joe Root.

A demolition job by new-ball pair Chris Woakes and Stuart Broad saw Ireland bundled out for 38 on Friday, a day that began with the visitors dreaming of a historic maiden triumph in the longest format after being set 182 for victory.

England began in similar batting turmoil as they were dismissed for 85 in the first session of the match, with Ireland's seam attack led by the excellent Tim Murtagh wreaking havoc on a green pitch.

The five-match Ashes series against Australia begins at Edgbaston next week before the second Test comes to Lord's and Root seemingly challenged head groundsman Karl McDermott to up his game before that keenly anticipated clash.

"I don't like saying this, but the wicket was substandard for a Test match," Root told a post-match news conference.

"I thought it wasn't even close to a fair contest between bat and ball throughout the whole game.

"First innings, last innings, when you are getting scores like that, that tells a story in itself."

Asked whether he was preparing for similar pitches during an Ashes series expected to be dominated by two high-class seam attacks, Root replied: "I hope not.

"You have to find ways of coping with that. It was extreme in this game. From a batting point of view, it's hard to take too much out of it."

Although England rested World Cup heroes such as Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler for the Ireland match, Root conceded players like himself who stayed on for the quick change in formats were feeling "knackered".

"It's been 10 weeks of hard cricket, of high emotion, of ups and downs. It does take a lot out of you," he added.

"You have to suck it up and get on with it. It's not been perfect, but we've dealt with it pretty well.

"We've never been in a position where we've won a World Cup, so for half the side to be part of that and then very quickly adjust to Test cricket is unusual.

"You've never been in that position before, so it's hard to know how you're going to cope."

Joe Root felt England gave a timely demonstration of their calm under pressure after blowing Ireland away at Lord's on Friday.

Set 182 for a historic maiden Test victory, the visitors crumbled to 38 all out – Chris Woakes and Stuart Broad sharing all 10 wickets in a masterful demonstration of seam and swing in helpful conditions.

It meant England's blushes were spared after a dismal 85 all out on the first morning left them staring at a humiliating defeat.

"I know that that was a lot of runs on this surface," Root said at the post-match presentation, before alluding to last year's dramatic win over India in similar circumstance at Edgbaston – the venue for next week's first Ashes Test against Australia.

"We've been in this position before, we found ourselves in a similar position at Edgbaston last year so we knew that we'd been able to manage a similar sort of scenario.

"I think it was important that we stayed calm, in control of what we wanted to do and asked the right questions - and that's exactly what we did."

Woakes' Test-best figures of 6-17 extended his phenomenal record at Lord's, while Broad's 4-19 wrought further torment upon the overmatched Ireland batting order.

"Both me and Woakesy would roll these conditions up today and take them everywhere with us," Broad told BBC Sport. "You fancy defending anything in these conditions.

"The biggest part of this match was us picking up 10 wickets on day one because if Ireland had got a huge lead that would have been it.

"A lot has happened in two and a half days!"

Ireland captain Will Porterfield called on his Test rookies to take lessons from an ultimately bruising experience that promised so much.

"It all happened pretty quickly - they exploited the overcast conditions," he said.

"All the dismissals were lbw, bowled or caught by slip or keeper - the exact dismissals a bowling side is looking for on that pitch in these conditions.

"It's a big learning curve for the lads."

England's Ashes preparations quickly hit the rocks as they were incredibly all out for 85 against Ireland in a humiliating start to this week's Test.

Three Cricket World Cup heroes went for ducks, Jason Roy made just five on debut and captain Joe Root added only two as the stunned hosts failed to make it to lunch at Lord's.

Tim Murtagh took figures of 5-13, earning his place on the honours board, as Ireland made hay in their first Test at the home of cricket.

The remarkable scenes should offer serious encouragement to Australia, themselves and Australia A meanwhile struggling with the bat in Southampton.

England looked to have recovered from Roy's shaky start that saw him edge to Paul Stirling in the slips, but Joe Denly, top-scoring on 23, went lbw to Mark Adair (3-32) to spark an astonishing collapse.

Rory Burns was caught behind for six and Adair got Root lbw before a remarkable run of ducks for England's ODI stars.

Jonny Bairstow was superb in the World Cup but his stumps were destroyed by Murtagh, who trapped Chris Woakes lbw - the review going with the umpire's decision - two balls later in a stunning two-wicket maiden.

Moeen Ali was caught behind and suddenly England were forced to work hard to avoid their record-low Test score (45 against Australia in 1887), doing so with boundaries met with sarcastic cheers.

The home side's fortunes did not improve, though, as Boyd Rankin (2-5) got a nick from Stuart Broad, before Sam Curran sent the same man to James McCollum at short leg.

Olly Stone, another debutant, got to 19 before Adair skittled him and England's innings was cut embarrassingly short just before the end of the session.

"I'm not quite sure what's happened over the past two hours, to be honest," Murtagh told Sky Sports.

Adam Hollioake believes Jason Roy is ready to be unleashed on Australia in the Ashes and wants to see Joe Root step up and bat at number three.

Roy will make his Test debut against Ireland at Lord's on Wednesday after playing a huge role in England's maiden Cricket World Cup triumph on home soil.

Former England ODI captain Hollioake thinks Roy and Surrey team-mate Rory Burns are the right men to open, with Keaton Jennings axed again following a poor series against West Indies.

Hollioake also feels captain Root should take it upon himself to solve the problem number three slot in the Ashes series opener at Edgbaston next week.

"I'd have Jason Roy in the side and I'd open with him. I'd definitely have him in the side after the way he played in the World Cup," Hollioake told Omnisport.

"And I would like to see Root go in at three, there's no doubt he is good enough as he is England's best batsman.

"If you have someone else who wants to do it and he can remain at four, that is great, but I can't see there is that much difference between three and four.

"I'd like to see Burns and Roy open. It's nice to have a bit of familiarity and it's right hand with left hand.

"They played last year together in Surrey's Championship-winning side, it has a nice feel about it."

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