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The Ashes 2015: BT Sport wins TV rights as England celebrate

England are crushed at The Oval but still celebrate Ashes series triumph as another Test fails to go the distance

The Ashes 2015: Australia vow to bomb Bell at Edgbaston

28 July

England face a number of problems as they head into the third Ashes Test at Edgbaston with Australia "preening and full of confidence" following their comprehensive 405 run victory at Lord's last week.

"The mindgames are now in full swing with the series locked at 1-1," says Nick Hoult of the Daily Telegraph, with Australia accusing England of not knowing what sort of pitch to produce.

The touring bowlers also have the scent of blood in their nostrils after rolling England for 103 in the second innings at Lord's, and Mitchell Starc has promised to take a leaf out of his namesake Mitchell Johnson's book, after watching him pepper the English batsman with bouncers.

"It is great to see a few of the guys jumping about and we got a few wickets that way," said Starc. "We have got extra pace on our side... The short stuff will definitely be on the menu."

The pitch:

England coach Trevor Bayliss has asked for a "traditional" English pitch for the third Test, says Hoult in the Telegraph. But his orders appear to contradict those of team director Andrew Strauss, whose advice to groundsmen before the series started appeared to have been to prepare sluggish pitches.

Conflicting demands and bad weather have led to the sight of ground-staff using "hot lamps confiscated by police from cannabis growers to dry out the surface", says Hoult. The result is likely to be a wicket that offers "seam movement and a bit more carry but will still be slow and unlikely to have any significant bounce".

Starc is unconcerned. "I don't think they know what pitches they want," he said. Australia believe that their extra pace means that they will get more out of any pitch than the English.

For whom the Bell tolls:

With Gary Ballance dropped from the side, Ian Bell will be promoted up the order to number three where he will "bear some of the brunt of the promised bouncers", says Richard Hobson in The Times. But the pressure is on as he must also prevent yet another top order collapse of the kind that has plagued England in recent months.

There is an element of risk in the decision, says Hobson. "England are gambling in trying to arrest poor starts at the top of the innings by promoting a batsman short on confidence with 128 runs in 12 innings."

The stakes are high for 33-year-old Bell, and failure could be terminal. "If Bell goes, he may well be gone for good," says Hobson and George Dobell of Cricinfo agrees. "It is no exaggeration to suggest that this could be his last Test. It is remarkable how quickly tomorrow's man can become yesterday's."

Mitchell Johnson:

England's nemesis reared his head in the second innings at Lord's as Mitchell Johnson roared in on a dead pitch and bombed England out of the match.

He has a "psychological hold over England's batsmen", claims Kevin Pietersen, who was part of the team torn to pieces by Johnson in Australian in 2013/14, in the Daily Telegraph. So what can they do?

"You have to embrace the challenge and ignore the defeatist thoughts. When you retire from cricket you want to be able to look back and say you scored runs against the best teams in the toughest situations. So who cares if he is bowling well. England have to relish the challenge," he says.

Leaving the ball is key, he advises. "Johnson bowls fast and aggressively in short bursts, whereas Starc can bowl for longer periods and swings the ball back into the right-handers. Josh Hazlewood, from what I have seen, is just a quality, accurate bowler. It is a very strong attack."

Selection problems:

Australia's defeat in the first Test was put down to wicket keeper Brad Haddin dropping Joe Root on nought. The England man made a century and England went on to win. Haddin was unavailable for the second Test for personal reasons, but his replacement, Peter Nevill, made no mistakes and will keep his place in the side.

"Given his chance in difficult circumstances, Nevill shone with seven catches and a fluent 45 with the bat, while also showing the ideal temperament for Test matches," says Cricinfo. It means that Haddin may have played his last Test.

All rounder Mitchell Marsh, who replaced Shane Watson at Lord's is also retained, while Chris Rodgers will be fit to play so Australia will field an unchanged side for Birmingham. Australia's selectors, who had so much to consider and made key changes after the first Test, must be cock-a-hoop.

England, on the other hand, go into the Test with question marks over not only Bell, but also opener Adam Lyth, bowler Mark Wood and even wicket-keeper Jos Buttler. The boot is now well and truly on the other foot.

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