Article

Marsh comes in for Handscomb as England bat first in Perth

14 décembre 2017 03:13

Australia have opted for Mitchell Marsh ahead of Peter Handscomb after England won the toss and elected to bat first in the third Ashes Test.

Captain Steve Smith waited until Thursday's toss to make a decision on his XI and it was as expected, with all-rounder Marsh replacing the out-of-form Handscomb in the only change for Australia, who lead the series 2-0.

Perth native Marsh – joining older brother Shaun in the team having scored 402 runs at an average of 44.66 in the Sheffield Shield this season – will wear the baggy green for the 22nd time, having last appeared on Australia's tour of India in March.

There was no repeat of Joe Root's questionable decision-making in Adelaide as the England skipper opted to bat first at the WACA in a do-or-die clash for the tourists.

Root raised eyebrows when he sent the Australians in to bat – England going on to suffer a 120-run defeat.

England are unchanged for the match, though the Ashes holders have made one slight tweak to the XI, with wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow moving up to number six in the line-up.

Joe Root opted to elevate Bairstow as all-rounder Moeen Ali dropped to number seven, while paceman Craig Overton will make his second Test appearance.

However, the Test has been overshadowed by allegations of attempts to fix an Ashes match following the publication of a media report.

The Sun this week claimed its undercover reporters had been offered the opportunity to purchase details of supposed rigged periods of play in the third Test in Perth.

Cricket Australia said it will cooperate fully with any anti-corruption investigation, while the ICC said there is no evidence to suggest the Test at the WACA has been corrupted.

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