And just before I hand over to Geoff, some recommended reading if you have time before play starts.
From Geoff himself, on his unwavering love for Glenn Maxwell:
Related: Unpredictable Glenn Maxwell gives turbo-charged Australia extra boost
Related: Australia should cut loose and make Steve Smith captain again | Russell Cunningham
“All this talk of sunshine so early in the day!” writes Ross Hall. “I can’t help but feel we’re now due a day of rain! We’ve had ours in Manchester this morning…Nottingham, brace yourselves!” Oh please, dear god, no.
Meanwhile, here’s Emma John and the latest Spin Podcast, this week featuring a lineup consisting of a respected cricket writer and two comedians. I’ll let you decide which ones are which (boom, boom).
Related: A century of sixes and Eoin Morgan for prime minister – The Spin podcast
Team news. Three changes for Australia: Jason Behrendorff, Kane Richardson and Shaun Marsh make way for the returns of Adam Zampa, Nathan Coulter-Nile and Marcus Stoinis. For Bangladesh, Sabbir Rahman and Rubel Hossain come into the team for Mohammad Saifuddin and Mossadek Hossain.
Australia won the toss and chose to bat against Bangladesh . #AUSvBAN #CWC19 #Cricket pic.twitter.com/gOKbSe2ka1
Hold the back page: Aaron Finch finally wins a toss! That’s the first time this tournament Australia have done. Unsurprisingly, he reckons getting some runs on the board is a good idea; there seems to be plenty of runs in this track.
First email of the day. “Morning Mike.” Good evening, Nick Toovey. “With the as-yet-unidentified burning orb of gas appearing over the UK that residents of other countries refer to as ‘The Sun’, and Aus finally (or rumoured to be) playing Nathan Lyon, I wonder if this is the start of the ‘Second Phase’ of the tournament as such – tired pitches, dry weather (hopefully), we could see a complete 180 from yesterday’s nip-and-nibble-like-fire from de Grandhomme in muggy conditions into the long-predicted spinners World Cup in baking conditions.” Burning orb of gas, you say? It’s definitely up there somewhere. Doesn’t get much better than this.
So, we’re at the halfway stage of the tournament. How’s it been for you so far? The general consensus is that there is definite room for a bona fide classic match to break out at some point, if the to-date overall disappointing weather will allow it. Pertinent to today’s clash, Shakib al Hasan has proved he can be a world beater, while Australia seem to bring the best out of opposition fielders. Those and more talking points (10, count ‘em, in total), as decreed by Simon Burnton, here:
Related: Cricket World Cup 2019: 10 talking points at the halfway stage
Weather update: The sun is shining in Nottingham and my sources (the weather app) tell me it’s currently a balmy 15 degrees with a high of a 17 expected today. All with a zero percent (0%) chance of rain!
The team is on deck and ready to go at Trent Bridge. Coin toss in 30. First ball in just under an hour #CmonAussie #AUSvBAN #CWC19 pic.twitter.com/pPMWzW1Jci
On that incredible knock from Morgan – a 71-ball 148 – his partner-in-runs Joe Root, who himself scored a tidy 88 from 82 balls, didn’t seem too surprised by his captain’s exploits in the win over Afghanistan at Old Trafford. He said:
A lot of the time he will play in that manner, very selflessly, potentially going a little bit too hard, because he wants to set the example. He’s always been capable of doing it. It’s great to see him doing it on this stage, in a World Cup. I’m trying to find the right word to describe his innings. It was just phenomenal really, unbelievable ball striking and it completely took the game away.
Related: Eoin Morgan’s six-hitting spree has got England buzzing, says Joe Root
Australia currently sit in third (see for yourself), having been deposed from top spot first by England – and Eoin Morgan’s brutalist interpretation of the art of batting – and then shunted further down by New Zealand, whose victory over South Africa yesterday was inspired by a measured innings from Kane Williams that was in stark contrast to Morgan’s festival of six-hitting. Ali Martin wrote of the Kiwi’s century:
Williamson’s 138-ball masterclass on a pitch that prevented risk-free shot-making was an innings for the ages. The right-hander brought up his 12th ODI century with a six that levelled the scores in the final over, before guiding a four that completed a chase of 242 with three balls and four wickets to spare.
Related: Kane Williamson guides New Zealand to narrow World Cup win over South Africa
Hello and welcome. West Bridgford, not far from the banks of the River Trent, is the location for today’s Cricket World Cup clash, but this blog is initially brought to you from Sydney before heading back to Nottingham on the other side of the world where the dynamic duo of Geoff Lemon and Adam Collins will handle things from their positions on the ground (or in the press box at least) at Trent Bridge. Geoff will be along shortly; in the meantime I’ll fill in to get the ball rolling and the juices flowing as Australia seek to reclaim top spot on the World Cup table with victory over Bangladesh. It’s a 10:30am start, local time, 7:30pm AEST. Stick around.Continue reading...