England v Australia ODIs - Men's
Smith out as Australia sent in to bat in first ODI
Steve Smith to miss the first ODI after suffering a knock in the nets on the eve of the match in Manchester
11 September 2020, 09:10 PM AEST
Steve Smith will miss Australia's first ODI since March due to a head knock as England captain Eoin Morgan won the toss and elected to bowl first at Old Trafford on Friday.
Marcus Stoinis will bat at three and Glenn Maxwell at seven for their first ODIs since last year's World Cup, with Smith suffering a blow to the head in the nets on Thursday and has been rested as a precaution.
A team spokesperson confirmed Smith is being assessed for concussion.
Morgan resumes his spot in England’s line-up after his finger dislocation during the T20 series that saw him miss the third game, while Jason Roy has been restored to the top of the order following his side strain.
Australia XI: Aaron Finch (c), David Warner, Marcus Stoinis, Marnus Labuschagne, Mitch Marsh, Alex Carey (wk), Glenn Maxwell, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa, Josh Hazlewood
England XI: Jonny Bairstow, Jason Roy, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan (c), Jos Buttler (wk), Sam Billings, Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Adil Rashid, Jofra Archer, Mark Wood
England are fielding nine of the 11 players who won the World Cup last year, with Ben Stokes and Liam Plunkett the only ones missing. Sam Billings and Moeen Ali are in the XI in their place.
While Smith's head knock is being treated as a precaution, it is nonetheless a worrying sign given his recent history of concussion.
He became Test cricket's first concussion substitute at Lord's last year during the Ashes when Jofra Archer struck him with a fierce bouncer. He missed the third Test but returned for the final two matches in an extraordinary individual campaign.
His absence for the series opener against England leaves a heavy burden on the middle order of Stoinis, Marnus Labuschagne and Mitch Marsh, who is the third allrounder in the XI to give the Aussies a surplus of bowling options.
It is Australia's first 50-over game since March, when their three-match home series against New Zealand was postponed after just one game due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Former skipper Ricky Ponting believes Australia has "work to do" on their one-day cricket before the next World Cup in 2023.
"We know their T20 cricket of late has been good and we know their Test cricket has been outstanding, but there's still a few little holes in their one-day game and hopefully they can patch them up over the next week or so," Ponting told cricket.com.au.
"There's not too many holes, but I think they just have to work out what their brand of one-day cricket is going to be and how they're going to go about it because there's no doubt the talent's all there."
England suffered a shock defeat in their last ODI against Ireland last month but have regained the likes of Jofra Archer and Joe Root from their Test squad for the Australia series.
Manchester’s Old Trafford has already hosted six internationals this summer, mostly played on sluggish surfaces as pitch preparation has been hampered by the region’s chilly summer weather.
That could detract from the natural strengths of both the England and Australia line-ups, but Morgan said that would play into the home side’s hands ahead of the 2023 World Cup, to be held in India.
"It's a huge benefit to us playing at Old Trafford," Morgan said. "Hopefully it will be slow and take a lot of turn.
"That's very useful considering that's both our weakest point, and it's more than likely what we will play in India in 2023.
"If we had a choice of grounds to play at for the next period of time, this would be one of them."
England won the preceding T20 series against Australia 2-1.
2020 Tour of England
Australia's T20 and ODI squad: Aaron Finch (c), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Riley Meredith, Josh Philippe, Daniel Sams, Kane Richardson, Steven Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Andrew Tye, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa
England T20I squad: Eoin Morgan (c), Moeen Ali, Jofra Archer, Jonathan Bairstow, Tom Banton, Sam Billings, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Joe Denly, Chris Jordan, Dawid Malan, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood. Reserves: Liam Livingstone, Saqib Mahmood
England ODI squad: Eoin Morgan (c), Moeen Ali, Jofra Archer, Jonathan Bairstow, Tom Banton, Sam Billings, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood. Reserves: Joe Denly, Saqib Mahmood