Ashes 2013: Andy Flower and England to ride wave of emotion against Australia

Coach wants players to follow their hearts in first Test after naming Onions in 13-man squad

Andy Flower believes the wave of emotion generated by an Ashes  contest can carry England to victory over Australia at Trent Bridge.

The first Test starts in Nottingham on Wednesday and Flower, who is, outwardly, one of the most steely and level-headed figures, is happy for his players to follow their hearts as well as their heads.

These matches are remembered for the quality and drama of the cricket but also for the verbal battles between the sets of players at the moments of greatest tension. As team director, Flower’s job will be to know when to fire up certain players for the joust and when to compose others.

“Remaining calm and logical is  important, but emotions play a big part in all our lives,” said Flower. “They play a significant part in this competition and series, which is part of what makes it really exciting.

“My job is to prepare the guys and get them to optimum readiness to compete. For some guys, that means geeing them up; for others, it means calming them down.”

England have named a 13-man squad for the match, with Steven Finn, Tim Bresnan and Graham Onions fighting for the final place in the bowling attack alongside Jimmy Anderson, Stuart Broad and Graeme Swann.

Broad insists he is fully fit after having a cortisone injection to treat a problem in his right shoulder last Monday, but Flower will want to see the 27-year-old complete a full practice session to be reassured.

The decision to discard Nick Compton after the Test series against New Zealand means Joe Root will be captain Alastair Cook’s opening partner, with Kevin Pietersen returning to the team at four and Jonny Bairstow at six.

After an impressive winter in which they won in India and drew in New Zealand, England’s target is,  ultimately, to regain top spot in the world Test rankings, which South Africa seized last summer with their 2-0 series win in this country.

Their cause would be helped substantially by commanding victories both in this Ashes series and the five Tests that follow in Australia between November and January.

Flower continued: “One of our principles is constant improvement and we have some areas in which we can improve. We have had various discussions but we will tie up the real specifics at Trent Bridge.

“We have been preparing for this series as we would for any other and I think the players are match-hardened. This bunch of cricketers have adapted well in various conditions.

“They did so in India last winter, they have fought a number of  campaigns together and they have won a lot together, so that should give them confidence.”

England squad for first test

Age - Tests   - Runs - Ave.    

A N Cook (c) 28 92   7,52449.17

J E Root 22 6    424 42.40

I J L Trott 32 43  3,451  50.01

K P Pietersen 33 94   7,49949.01

J M Bairstow 23 8     341  31.00

M J Prior (wkt)  31 67 3,680 44.33

Age Tests    Wkts Ave.    

T T Bresnan 28 18 57  32.54

S C J Broad 27 57 195  30.93

G P Swann  34   52  222      28.50

S T Finn  24 22  88 28.73

J M Anderson 30 82  307 30.14

G Onions   30  9 32  29.90

* First Test 10-14 July (Trent Bridge)

Second Test 18-22 July (Lord’s)

Third Test 1-5 Aug (Old Trafford)

Fourth Test 9-13 Aug (Chester-Le-St)

Fifth Test 21-15 Aug (The Oval)

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own