Mitchell Marsh
Australia's Mitchell Marsh is set to replace Shane Watson for the second Test against England.Mitchell Marsh

After defeating Australia in the first Ashes Test in Cardiff, England will be a confident outfit as they prepare to face their biggest rivals at Lord's on Thursday for the second Test match of the prestigious series.

England, who dominated the first Test match, cannot afford to be complacent against the Australians, who are going to come hard in the second Test with the hope of levelling the series. Australia are not a team acquainted to losing and England captain Alistair Cook is aware that they cannot play defensive cricket and protect their lead.

"I think it is important that we don't sit back and protect the lead," Cook said. "We can't do that, certainly not against Australia.

"We have made a big effort with this series not to worry about what Australia do. It is about our attitude and approach. If we can get near the standards of Cardiff we will be a tough team to beat."

England took an aggressive approach against Australia in the first Test and one does not see any reason for them to change their winning formula. Despite the inconsistent top order of the English team, it is their middle order, which comprises of Ian Bell, Ben Stokes and Joe Root, who have been impressive. Their bowlers were also quite good during the first Test.

The home crowd at Lord's will ask the players to deliver once again.

But, there is some growing concern in England's camp regarding the fitness of Moeen Ali, who was exceptional with an all-round display in the first Test, as the Englishman is reported to be suffering from a side strain.

With the other English spinner in the squad Adil Rashid also unifit, England will be forced to play Moeen, who was seen bowling in the nets on Wednesday.

Australia also have concerns of their own with Mitchell Starc's fitness, but the fast bowler has been decalred fit to play in the second Test. Starc, along with Mitchell Johnson, needs to be on top of their game against the England batsmen, who took on the bowlers with great effect.

With the pitch at Lord's expected to provide something more for the bowlers than the Cardiff pitch, Starc and Johnson will try to make the best out of the situation.

Australia have also received a major setback with wicketkeeper Brad Haddin making himself unavailable for the Lord's Test due to personal reasons, as a result of which Peter Nevill will make his debut for Australia.

Apart from Haddin, Shane Watson has also been dropped from the team, and Mitchell Marsh will get a chance to impress in the longer format of the game. It is a huge series for Marsh, as some good performances in the series might help the all-rounder cement his place in the team at Watson's expense.

Irrespective of the names on the team sheet, a huge contest is on the cards with Australia trying to level the series and England eager to win the Lord's Test and inch closer to an Ashes series win.

Where to Watch Live

Following an intriguing first Test match, England will once again lock horns against Australia at Lord's for the second Test match, which is scheduled for 11am local time start (3:30pm IST, 6am ET, 7:30pm AEST) with live TV coverage in India on Star Sports 1/HD with live streaming on

Viewers in the UK can watch the game live on Sky Sports 2 with live streaming on Watch Sky Sports and Sky Go, while Australian viewers can catch the action live on Nine Network and online on CA website.

US viewers can watch the second Test live in TV on One World Sports and ESPN with live streaming on Watch ESPN.

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