Ian Bell insists Australia still pose a huge threat

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Ian Bell does not think that Australia will be any less of a threat after losing the first Test of the Ashes series on Sunday. 

Bell made a brilliant 109 in England's second-innings at Trent Bridge, playing a major part in their victory. 

But the batsman doesn't believe that Australia will be deflated because of the narrow 14 run defeat. 

"People have suggested that Australia may be deflated after getting so close to winning the first test but I don't see it that way at all," Bell told 

"They will be 100% up for the second test because, first, that's the nature of any Australian team, second they will know they could have easily won at Nottingham and, third, they are playing at Lords, a venue where every team in the world gets up for.

"It wouldn't surprise me if the second test is as tight as the first, and if the rest of the series is also very tight. None of the England team bought into the theory that we were strong favourites or this Australian team were not as strong as previous teams."

Despite the Aussie's defeat there were a number of stand-out performances from their players and surprise pick Ashton Agar was massively impressive on debut for his national side. 

Bell, though, says that England will not be surprised by the young spin-bowler - who also displayed fine batting prowess - this time around.

"I think the batting unit as a whole will be hoping for more runs and I'd like to think we won't get struck again by Ashton Agar, who we knew very little about, scoring a 98 from number 11 in the order. We are one up and know we can play a lot better than we did in Nottingham," he added. 

"Australia will be better, too, so it all sets up a fantastic test match. I'd be more than happy if this series proves to be another epic, just as long as we win. It's brilliant for cricket in this country and for the sport as a whole."

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