Joe Root (left) and Steven Smith will be the key batsmen for both the sides © Getty Images

Catch Live Cricket Scores of England (ENG) vs Australia (AUS) Ashes 2015 1st Test at Cardiff, Day 1 here

(Will Australia be at their rampant best, or will England find their mojo and take the urn back? Catch live cricket scores and updates of the first day’s play of first Ashes 2015 Test here)

So, end of the first day at Cardiff with both England and Australia walking off with something to cheer about. The century from Joe Root, a fighting knock from Gary Ballance and a strokeful half-century from Ben Stokes were the highlights for England, whereas Australia found their heroes in Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood, who claimed three wickets each. The final hour was indeed a special one, as late wickets brought Australia back on top as England looked well settled for a big score, say around 500. There will be plenty to read from us, stay tuned!

Here is Shiamak Unwalla’s final report of the first day of The Ashes 2015.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 343/7 in 88 overs: Two maiden overs to end the day as the players walk back after what turned out to be a pretty interesting day.

BATTING: Moeen Ali 26 (38), Stuart Broad 0 (7)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 343/7 in 86 overs: WICKET! What a time for Australia to strike! Late in the day, a soft dismissal as Hazlewood gets Buttler to give a dolly to Mitchell Johnson at mid on. This is a serious blow to England and their hopes of getting to 400.

BATTING: Moeen Ali 26 (32), Stuart Broad 0 (1)

OUT! Ben Stokes c Mitchell Johnson b Josh Hazlewood 27 (34)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 338/6 in 84 overs: Moeen Ali and Buttler have kept the Aussies at bay. Starc, who is not in operation is sitting in the shades at the moment. Australia looking a little tired, and England are making most of it by scoring runs on both the sides of the wicket.

BATTING: Ben Stokes 26 (28), Moeen Ali 22 (27)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 324/6 in 82 overs:  Johnson and Hazlewood in operation right now. There are about eight more overs left in the day. England would like to end on a high, add 30 odd runs to cross the 350-run mark and not lose any wicket. Moeen and Buttler have added 31 runs so far for the seventh wicket.

BATTING: Ben Stokes 14 (17), Moeen Ali 20 (26)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 316/6 in 80 overs: Hazlewood strikes Moeen Ali on the pads and there is an appeal for leg before, as the batsman left the ball alone which came back into him. The Aussies took a DRS review — since they were going to get their two reviews back after this ball — but replays showed it was missing the wickets. Time for the new ball. Mitchell Johnson to bowl.

BATTING: Ben Stokes 11 (16), Moeen Ali 15 (15)

The crowd has woken up at the sight of Mitchell Johnson, not clearly audible but I reckon they are singing, “…that Mitchell Johnson, his bowling is shite…”

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 312/6 in 78 overs: Moeen Ali has hit a six off Lyon and has attempted another, which  signals that England are looking for quick runs at the moment. They have crossed the 300-run mark, and it will be very crucial for them to get at least 400 batting first. Two more overs for the new ball. Johnson comes back on.

BATTING: Ben Stokes 15 (15), Moeen Ali 7 (10)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 296/6 in 76.2 overs: Fine effort from Ben Stokes, who continues to make giant strides. He completes his half-century, but Starc has the final laugh. The bowler cleans up the batsman, and gestures him to remain quiet. England lose their sixth wicket. Stokes falls after a final half-century.

BATTING: Ben Stokes 3 (9)

OUT! Ben Stokes b Mitchell Starc 52 (78)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 287/5 in 75 overs: Starc is steaming in, he produces another opportunity. A thickish outside edge off Stokes’ bat flies over the fielder in the third slip. Unlucky. Stokes is now one run away from his half-century.

BATTING:  Ben Stokes 49 (73), Ben Stokes 0 (6)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 280/5 in 72.1 overs: Not much happening in the middle. Warner and Watson are trying their luck but nothing has worked for them. England are easily going on adding runs without taking too much trouble. And out of nowhere, yes really, Starc has produced a wicket! Root has been caught at the first slip! Tired stroke from a man who had received treatment from physio sometime back,

BATTING:  Ben Stokes 34 (52)

OUT! Joe Root c Shane Watson b Mitchell Starc 134 (166)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 271/4 in 70 overs: After that compelling whitewash never did Australia would have thought that they will be forced to call upon David Warner to bowl. The right-arm bowler has just ended the 70th over of the innings, and there are 10 more overs before the Aussies get the new ball. Around 20 overs left for the day.

BATTING: Joe Root 133 (163), Ben Stokes 34 (52)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 265/4 in 68 overs: Stokes and Root are batting very comfortably at the moment. They have so far added about 70 runs for the fifth wicket. Australia would be hoping that they get to the second new ball without much damage.

BATTING: Joe Root 129 (157), Ben Stokes 33 (46)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 253/4 in 66 overs: Australia have employed Starc and Watson in tandem and these two have done well to keep a check on the scoring rate. Australia, however, can be back into this contest only with wickets.

BATTING: Joe Root 126 (156), Ben Stokes 28 (35)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 248/4 in 64 overs: The left-handed Stokes has taken up the mantle of scoring from Root and he is targetting Lyon at the moment. Remember, both these batsmen score at a brisk rate and Clarke will have to find answers to stop them. Root and Stokes have brought up their 50-run stand. There are 26 more overs left in the day.

BATTING: Joe Root 121 (146), Ben Stokes 28 (33)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 236/4 in 62 overs: Stokes ends an excellent over from Lyon with a massive six down the ground as Australia are looking a little clueless in order to make breakthroughs. Not much being attempted by the tourists, just the regulatory stuff. England are smiling at the moment. Australia need wickets.

BATTING: Joe Root 117 (140), Ben Stokes 20 (27)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 224/4 in 60 overs: Stokes plays out a maiden over from Lyon and Root gets a four off Starc in the 59th over. Australia must keep picking wickets to ensure they have some momentum on their side.

BATTING: Joe Root 111 (134), Ben Stokes 14 (21)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 219/4 in 58 overs: Stokes has started to open up as he gets a six and a four off Johnson, who is operating with Lyon in the middle. England would not like to lose any wicket here. Starc to bowl now.

BATTING: Joe Root 107 (129), Ben Stokes 13 (14)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 209/4 in 56 overs: There it is!!! Joe Root, take a bow! What a century by the Yorkshire lad. Calm, composed as well as aggressive at the same time. Brings up his 7th Test century with a splendid drive for a FOUR off Hazlewood. England are delighted! Ben Stokes has joined Root in the middle, and England would be aiming another strong partnership in the middle. STATS ALERT: This is sixth fastest Ashes Ton for England.

BATTING: Joe Root 107 (123), Ben Stokes 3 (8)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 196/4 in 53.3 overs: WICKET!!! There it is! Hazlewood is the man who break this stubborn stand and does the job for Australia. The right-arm bowler comes from round the wicket, pitches it full and into the left-handed Ballance. The batsman misses to connect, and it is a very simple decision for Kumar Dharmasena!

BATTING: Joe Root 97 (116)

OUT! Gary Ballance lbw Josh Hazlewood 61 (149)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 194/3 in 53 overs: Johnson comes on for the first over after the tea break. Root gets a four on the final ball. Root will be cautious in the initial stages of this session, and Ballance will perhaps do all the scoring.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 59 (146), Joe Root 97 (116)

A full session belonging to either of the sides after they both had their fair share early in the morning. Root has been at his best, and Ballance has done well to remain unfazed by his partner’s feats. They have added 147 runs so far, and Australia have a huge task in their hands to take back control of the proceedings.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 190/3 in 51 overs: Fine effort by Root and Ballance as they take England from a precarious position to one where it can be said they are one top. Australia have toiled hard so far in the day, but the poor wicket has not helped their cause. Michael Clarke will need fresh ideas when play resumes in about 20 minutes.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 59 (146), Joe Root 93 (110)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 189/3 in 51 overs: Both sides are looking forward to the tea break. Australia would want to take a breather, bit of rest and come and push for wickets, while England would want to resume on the same note they have carried on throughout this session. Scoring has dried up as well.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 59 (143), Joe Root 92 (107)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 187/3 in 49 overs: Ballance and Root are determined to go into the final session unscathed, and the flat deck is contributing effectively to their cause. Johnson has been summoned in the bowling attack, but Australia do not look like breaking this partnership anytime soon. Root is into the 90s, and it will be interesting to see if he completes his century before the tea break, which is about 10 minutes away.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 57 (137), Joe Root 92 (101)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 179/3 in 47 overs: Ballance gets the reward of being patient and disciplined on a dead track, as he has forced himself back into form after what looked like a nervous start. This is his sixth half-century in Test cricket, and England would be delighted with their No. 3 getting some runs finally, and especially in the start of a series as important as the Ashes. On the other hand, Australia continue to search for wickets.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 53 (130), Joe Root 88 (95)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 172/3 in 45 overs: Nervous moment for Root in the 44th over when an inside edge ricocheted off the front pad and short leg could only get his hands on the ball. But none of that is hampering Root, who looks well set for yet another century at home. Starc has replaced Watson.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 47 (120), Joe Root 87 (94)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 157/3 in 43 overs: For the fourth time in his innings Root gets an inside edge but remains safe. Ballance and Root going about their job in their ways, none among Lyon or Watson looking like they will take a wicket here. The sun is shining bright, and England going strong.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 44 (117), Joe Root 79 (85)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 152/3 in 41 overs: 150 up for England with Root hitting a fine cover drive off the final ball from Watson in the 41st over. Australia must take wickets at this moment, or else these two will keep taking the momentum towards England’s side.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 41 (108), Joe Root 77 (82)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 143/3 in 39 overs:  Shane Watson comes into the attack. Root punches one on the off side to collect three runs, and also bring up a very, very crucial 100-run stand with Ballance. Now here’s some real good Aussie pun:


BATTING: Gary Ballance 41 (104), Joe Root 72 (74)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 140/3 in 38 overs:  The drinks break is over with England winning the first hour of the second session on Day One. They have added about 50 runs, but most importantly, they have not lost a wicket. Australia desperately trying for a breakthrough.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 41 (100), Joe Root 69 (72)

Time for drinks with England nicely placed at 139 for three after 39 overs. Australia need wickets desperately.

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 134/3 in 36 overs: Lyon raps one on the pads and Australia appeal for DRS against Root. The replays show the ball was hitting right in front of the middle stump, but had pitched slightly outside leg. Steven Smith, the stand in skipper looks disappointed as Clarke had gone back to the dressing room. Johnson and Lyon operating for Australia at the moment. England going strong with Root and Ballance adding 91 runs so far for the fourth wicket. This is how it looked:


BATTING: Gary Ballance 41 (92), Joe Root 63 (68)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 120/3 in 34 overs: Australia have changed their tactics and Ballance is being attacked with short pitch bowling. There were a few loose defensive strokes from the batsman off Johnson, and it will be interesting to see if there is a change in the bowling attack to bolster the plan.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 38 (88), Joe Root 53 (60)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 118/3 in 32 overs: Yep, Nathan Lyon is back into the attack and he produces an opportunity straight away. There is a thick outside edge off Root’s bat, but too wide of Shane Watson at extra cover, which gets him two runs. Half-century No. 12 in Test cricket for the talented young lad from Yorkshire. Well played!

BATTING: Gary Ballance 38 (79), Joe Root 51 (57)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 113/3 in 31 overs: Johnson has replaced Starc in the bowling attack. No swing at the moment and not much pace means batting is a lot easier. Root and Ballance are happily rotating the strike and collecting easy runs. Four runs added in total from the last 12 balls. Clarke should make changes now, perhaps get Lyon back alongside Shane Watson.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 38 (77), Joe Root 46 (53)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 109/3 in 29 overs: Starc gets an outside edge off Ballance’s bat but the ball drops very short of Shane Watson at the first slip. The ball is not moving much, and neither of the team is on the aggressive mode. Hazelwood keeps Root quite for one entire over.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 38 (74), Joe Root 42 (44)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 103/3 in 27 overs: Ballance plays one really well through the slips to get a four and brings up England’s 100. England will be hoping that these two bat through this session, having settled down really well and Australians do not pushing really hard for breakthroughs at the moment.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 34 (69), Joe Root 41 (37)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 95/3 in 25 overs: Well done Root and Ballance for adding 50 runs for the fourth wicket. The job is far from done from England’s perspective. Hazlewood and Starc bowling in tandem post lunch, wonder where is Lyon, after having bowled impressively in the morning session.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 30 (63), Joe Root 37 (31)

Play has resumed after lunch break.

Brad Haddin would know the magnitude of mistake he made by attempting that one handed catch, because since then, runs have flowed in easily for England. Root took the lifeline with both hands, and raced away to a 24-ball 33 not out with the help of five boundaries. For Australia, they did get the wickets but could have done a lot better. Johnson has not got a wicket so far, while Starc and Hazlewood have got one each. Lyon chipped in with the big wicket of Cook, but Australia’s real test is against Root and the other men who form the idea of ‘New England’. It is time for lunch, and here is Shiamak Unwalla’s report of the first session: Joe Root steadies England after early wickets against Australia

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 88/3 in 23 overs: England are scoring runs comfortably on both the sides of the wickets as the sun has come out, making the pitch look a lot easier to bat on. Johnson has not got a wicket so far, comes closer to take a wicket as Root gets an inside edge. It’s time for lunch.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 28 (57), Joe Root 33 (24)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 70/3 in 21 overs: Johnson has come on to bowl and Root in style, welcomes him with a FOUR through the off side. Johnson is looking for bounce and Root is playing them all really well, pushing each through off side. Runs have started flowing in for England, since Root is here. He has gone past the struggling Ballance.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 17 (52), Joe Root 26 (17)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 61/3 in 19 overs: Root may have had his nervous moments but he has done really well to score as many runs as Ballance has, toiling throughout the session. Hazlewood is bowling from round the wicket, while Starc is coming from over the wicket. And looks like it has started drizzling.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 17 (43), Joe Root 17 (14)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 55/3 in 17 overs: Plenty of swing for both Starc and Hazlewood. Root is off the mark with a glorious drive straight down the ground, and then brings up the team’s 50 with a four on a wide delivery outside off. Starc then bowls a fuller one, and Root does well to push it through cover and collect a couple of runs. Plenty of runs for England in the over.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 17 (37), Joe Root 11 (8)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 43/3 in 15 overs: DROPPED! Brad Haddin attempts a one-handed dive to the left as the ball had deflected off Joe Root’s bat. The ball was pitched outside off, very full. Root gets an edge as he rams his bat down the ground. Poor call from Haddin to try and take it one-handed. And this, was after Root survived a close LBW appeal. The replays showed the ball had taken an inside edge.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 16 (30), Joe Root 0 (3)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 43/3 in 14.3 overs: Mitchell Starc you beauty! The left-arm pacer bowls one right into the block hole, and Bell has no answer to it. The ball pitched on middle and leg and may have drifted down as well. But Bell and Ballance did not feel that it can be reviewed, and the batsman walks back. England have stuttered!

BATTING: Gary Ballance 16 (30),

OUT! Ian Bell b Mitchell Starc 1 (7)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 43/2 in 14 overs: Ian Bell has walked out and he too looks like a bundle of nerves. Comes down the track first ball, and attempts a lofty stroke in the air that falls safely. Crucial couple of minutes these for England.

BATTING: Gary Ballance 16 (30), Ian Bell 1 (4)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 42/2 in 13.2 overs: OUT! BIG WICKET!!! Cook pays the price for trying to be aggressive against. Regulation delivery from Lyon, turning away from the England captain. Cook rocks back and tries to cut, but gets a thick edge that settles in to Brad Haddin’s gloves. Australia are delighted!

BATTING:  Gary Ballance 16 (30)

OUT! Alastair Cook c Brad Haddin b Nathan Lyon 20 (40)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 42/1 in 13 overs: Starc has replaced Johnson in the bowling attack, and is operating with Lyon in tandem. For some unexplained reason, Cook is looking to score off almost every ball off Lyon, and is even coming down the wicket.

BATTING: Alastair Cook 20 (38), Gary Ballance 16 (30)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 36/1 in 11 overs: Ballance may have started off nervously but he has gathered some confidence as of now. He is watching the ball well, and is also picking the singles at ease. Nathan Lyon is operating with Johnson at the moment now.

BATTING: Alastair Cook 20 (32), Gary Ballance 10 (24)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 36/1 in 11 overs: Ballance may have started off nervously but he has gathered some confidence as of now. He is watching the ball well, and is also picking the singles at ease. Nathan Lyon is operating with Johnson at the moment now.

BATTING: Alastair Cook 20 (32), Gary Ballance 10 (24)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 34/1 in 9 overs: Cook gets a lucky four off Johnson as he was looking to leave the ball but it hit the bat and went through the slips. There is not much swing right now, the ball is not bouncing much either. Still, Ballance has had his luck. He is still at the crease.

BATTING: Alastair Cook 20 (26), Gary Ballance 8 (18)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 22/1 in 7 overs: Do you remember how poor Ballance’s approach was against Trent Boult in the second Test of the New Zealand series? I remember he was not even watching the ball. Similar scenes here at Cardiff, England’s No. 3 is not looking as technically astute as he should. Couple of soft-handed strokes being offered from deep into the crease. Johnson rams him with a short ball which is poorly defended. Two runs taken, painfully.

BATTING: Alastair Cook 10 (19), Gary Ballance 6 (13)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 20/1 in 6 overs: Cook gets his first four of the Ashes and second of the series and the innings on a short ball from Hazlewood. Ordinary from the Aussie bowler as he continues to bowl different line and lengths.

BATTING: Alastair Cook 9 (18), Gary Ballance 5 (8)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 16/1 in 5 overs: Mitchell Johnson comes on and Alastair Cook is forced to play the first three balls. The first is defended on the front foot, the second is full toss caressed through off for two runs. Third is again very full, Cook takes a single. The fourth ball keeps low, hits the bottom of Ballance’s bat. A poor wicket this with no bounce? Johnson is attacking the stumps, Ballance takes a single on the second last ball, pushing the ball ahead as he goes deep into the crease. Single to end the over.

BATTING: Alastair Cook 5 (12), Gary Ballance 5 (8)

Mitchell Johnson to bowl, Alastair Cook on strike…

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 11/1 in 4 overs: Cook plays out a maiden from Starc, who mostly keeps the ball away from the off. Gary Ballance starts off nervously, the second ball of the fourth over from Hazlewood is angling in, and the batsman plays a defensive stroke with the ball dying right in front of Adam Voges at short leg. FOUR! Ballance gets an outside edge but the ball beats the slip fielder and races down to the boundary.

BATTING: Alastair Cook 1 (8), Gary Ballance 4 (6)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 7/1 in 2 overs: Josh Hazlewood is on from the other end. The second ball keeps very low, moves into the England captain. Cook gets his bat down in time or else it would have been very close. The third ball is on the pads and Lyth gets the first four of the series on the leg side. Bit of struggle as far as line is concerned for Hazlewood, the next ball is way outside the off stump. WICKET!!! Hazlewood gets one straight into the batsman, Lyth is cramped for room as he is looking to play it on the leg side. A thick outside edge and the left-hander is caught in the gully, a very good low catch by David Warner.

BATTING: Alastair Cook 1 (2)

OUT! Adam Lyth c David Warner b Josh Hazlewood 6 (10)

LIVE CRICKET SCORE England 0/o in 1 over: Mitchell Starc to begin the proceedings and it is Adam Lyth who will take the strike. Pretty overcast for the moment. The first ball is banged into the middle, moves away. Lyth lets it go. There is swing for Starc but not much bounce. The third ball keeps low, close to the off stump. Lyth is beaten. Maiden to start with.

BATTING: Adam Lyth 0 (6), Alastair Cook 0 (0)

And here they roll out. First the Aussies led by Clarke and then Alastair Cook and his partner Adam Lyth. Big day, big moment. Who will stand up for his team and deliver!

Would you believe this? There is further delay. The official start time has been pushed to 11.15 am local time, still about 6-7 minutes from now. Players are back in the pavilion.

We are done with the anthems but there is one more. Third in a row. After the anthems are done the players are having a handshake before they head for the action. But not before some fireworks in the background.

To bring you update from the round: Cook and Clarke have led out their teams onto the field.

The rains have cleared up, but the start has been delayed further with some songs and flags being carried around. Not exactly sure what is this, but now we are losing time.

The groundsmen are seen taking off the covers at the moment. The anxious wait goes on. Still about eight minutes left for the scheduled start of the play.

And the rains have arrived! Does not look very heavy at the moment but the players are there in the stands and the pitch has been covered.

A very important toss for England to win and to bat. Had Australia won it, they would have batted as well. Important first hour, first session and so on and so forth. But the winner would be the one who would bring its A game forward throughout the first couple of Tests.

Big call to leave out the in form Mitchell Marsh, and the inclusion of Shane Watson clearly says Australia are looking for experience their middle order. England have played safe by selecting their same playing eleven from their last Test, with Moeen Ali taking the role of the only spinner.

TOSS: England captain Alastair Cook won the toss and elected to bat against Australia in the opening Test of The Ashes 2015 at the Sophia Gardens in Cardiff on Wednesday.

Team news: Australia have left out Mitchell Marsh for Shane Watson. Here are the playing eleven:

England: Alastair Cook (c), Jos Buttler (wk), Joe Root, Ian Bell, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Moeen Ali, Gary Ballance, Adam Lyth, Ben Stokes, Mark Wood.

Australia: Michael Clarke (c), Steven Smith, Brad Haddin (wk), Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Johnson, Josh Hazlewood, Chris Rogers, David Warner, Shane Watson, Nathan Lyon, Adam Voges.

Hello and welcome to CricketCountry’s live cricket blog and of the most awaited Test series of the year, The Ashes 2015. This is Devarchit Varma, and I will be bringing you the live cricket updates and scores of the first day’s play of The Ashes 2015 opening Test between England and Australia, at the Sophia Gardens in Cardiff. PREVIEW: England vs Australia 1st Test at Cardiff

There has been an excellent build-up to this mega event between Australia and England. The hosts have had a mixed run in the recent past with drawn Test series against West Indies and New Zealand, whereas Australia are coming off the World Cup 2015 win and a successful tour of the Caribbean. READ: Ashes 2015 no less than test of character for Clarke and Cook

There is a lot of talk surrounding the ‘New England’ and their rise. Indeed, England played a different brand of cricket in the One-Day International (ODI) series against New Zealand, and they surely would like to draw some inspiration from that. And if it is about drawing inspiration from wins in the past and other formats, Australia would be keen to maintain their domination with the World Cup trophy in their bag. READ: ‘New England’s’ form across formats a good sign

Sledging has been a topic discussed extensively in the build-up to this Ashes 2015, and so has been the presence of men who have the ability to lead their sides to win. The likes of Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Mark Wood, David Warner, Steven Smith, Mitchell Starc and few more are touted to be match-winners for their respective sides and this series promises to be yet another thrilling affair. READ: Ashes 2015: Michael Clarke hopes for series to be as exciting as 2005 edition

In all likelihood, The Ashes 2015 will be the final series for Alastair Cook and Michael Clarke as the respective captains of England and Australia. Both men are seasoned campaigners, and they would be fully prepared come the hour to perform. READ: Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook willing to alter captaincy style during upcoming series


England: Alastair Cook (c), Jos Buttler (wk), Joe Root, Ian Bell, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Moeen Ali, Gary Ballance, Steven Finn, Adam Lyth, Adil Rashid, Ben Stokes, Mark Wood.

Australia: Michael Clarke (c), Steven Smith (vc), Brad Haddin (wk), Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Johnson, Josh Hazlewood, Chris Rogers, David Warner, Shane Watson, Fawad Ahmed, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Pater Nevill (wk), Peter Siddle, Adam Voges, Pat Cummins.

Catch Live Cricket Scores and Ball-by-Ball commentary of England (ENG) vs Australia (AUS) Ashes 2015 1st Test at Cardiff, Day 1 here