Sportz – Ashes 2013: Matt Prior to lead England against Western Australia

JIMMY ODUMUYIWA @le_visibilitybloG

 Matt Prior, the vice-captain, will lead England on Wednesday in the first match of their Australia tour. The absence of the captain, Alastair Cook, with a stiff back may be more of a precaution than a necessity but it still suggests that both sides in the forthcoming Ashes series will have concerns about their leaders in the lumber region.

It was widely expected that Cook would miss the opening match against a weakened Western Australia team as he sat out the squad’s practice at the Waca ground for the second successive day. Nor is he the only high profile player not in the starting XI. Other players almost certain to be selected for the First Test, who will not feature in the curtain-raiser, are Kevin Pietersen, Graeme Swann and Stuart Broad.

It is difficult to tell whether it is good news or bad for Jonny Bairstow, who was dropped from…

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