England name Ashes squad

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England have named their 13-man squad for the first Ashes Test against Australia, with Joe Root selected ahead of Nick Compton at the top of the batting order for the opening encounter of the eagerly-awaited series.

Compton has partnered Alastair Cook in every Test since the retirment of Andrew Strauss, but lost his place to Root for England's pre-Ashes warm-up against Essex in Chelmsford last week.

The Somerset batsman has been unable to regain a spot in the side, with 22-year-old Root identified as the most suitable player to open up for England alongside the captain.

There were few surprises in the squad announced on Saturday afternoon, with Kevin Pietersen making his return - as expected - having not played a Test match since March due to injury.

James Anderson and Stuart Broad are set to take the new ball for England at Trent Bridge, while Steven Finn, Tim Bresnan and Graham Onions are also selected in a fast-bowler heavy squad.

Graeme Swann is the solitary full-time spin bowler having been passed fit, while Root is likely to fill some overs with his turners should England require the use of another spinner.

The first test begins on Wednesday at Trent Bridge, with further encounters at Lord's, Old Trafford, Durham and The Oval.

England squad for the first Ashes Test against Australia:

Alastair Cook (Essex, capt), Joe Root (Yorkshire), Jonathan Trott (Warwickshire), Kevin Pietersen (Surrey), Ian Bell (Warwickshire), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire), Matt Prior (Sussex, wk), Tim Bresnan (Yorkshire), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), Graeme Swann (Nottinghamshire), Steven Finn (Middlesex), James Anderson (Lancashire), Graham Onions (Durham).

James Anderson
Joe Root
Kevin Pietersen
England cricket
The Ashes
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