After whitewashing New Zealand in the two-Test series, England now turn their attention to a three-match ODI series starting at Lord's on Friday. (AP Photo)
London: After whitewashing New Zealand in the two-Test series, England now turn their attention to a three-match ODI series starting at Lord's on Friday. The series is important for both teams as the Champions Trophy is lined up next, and quality practice is what both teams are in search of before the eight-team tournament commences on June 6.
England undoubtedly go into the series as the red-hot favourites due to perfect balance in all three departments. Most players pick themselves in the side. However, allrounder Tim Bresnan may not feature in the match as he wishes to be with his wife who is expecting a child. Jade Dernbach has been called up as cover and will play in case Bresnan misses out.
As far as New Zealand are concerned, their batting is a massive concern. All through the Test series, their batsmen struggled for runs in the seamer-friendly conditions in England. The Black Caps bowlers did a very good job but had very little runs to bowl at. Clearly, if New Zealand are to pose any threat in the 50-overs format, captain Brendon McCullum and Ross Taylor - the two most experienced players in the side - will have to take the lead.
However, there is bad news for the visitors, with their promising medium pacer Trent Boult ruled out for almost two months on account of a side strain. Boult was very impressive in the Test series and his loss was the last things the Black Caps needed. Ian Butler has been called up as Boult's replacement and is likely to get a game.
England: Alastair Cook (capt), James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow, Ian Bell, Ravi Bopara, Tim Bresnan, Stuart Broad, Jos Buttler (wkt), Steven Finn, Eoin Morgan, Joe Root, Graeme Swann, James Tredwell, Jonathan Trott, Chris Woakes, Jade Dernbach
New Zealand: Brendon McCullum (capt/wkt), Ian Butler, Grant Elliott, Andrew Ellis, James Franklin, Martin Guptill, Mitchell McClenaghan, Nathan McCullum, Kyle Mills, Colin Munro, Luke Ronchi (wkt), Tim Southee, Ross Taylor, Daniel Vettori, Kane Williamson