Ball wary of Australia threat
July 27, 2012 17:44:31 UK
England Under-19 captain Adam Ball has warned of hosts Australia's threat in the forthcoming Under-19 World Cup.
Kent's Ball is one of 10 England players with county first-team experience on the trip, and a high percentage of the squad were also part of the team that beat the Australians in Townsville during a quadrangular one-day tournament earlier this year.
Ball, the Kent left-arm paceman and hard-hitting lower-order batsman, guided England to a three-wicket win over the home team as England finished third in that event but expects a serious examination of his team's credentials on August 11.
"Australia are going to be very strong, I think," said Ball. "They're at home and will be especially motivated after losing to us over there. They won't want to let that happen again - so we've got to be at our best.
"Are they the favourites? I am not sure. Pakistan are traditionally strong at Under-19 level, so they will be dangerous, and we played India and New Zealand in the quadrangular and they were both good sides, so it will be all the usual suspects, really.
"The World Cup is a unique chance to see where you stand in relation to your peers, that's how I saw my last experience.
"I learned a lot from the older guys, people like Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler and James Vince who have gone on to play for their counties."
Ball's side, who also face Ireland and Nepal in Group A, include his Kent team-mate Daniel Bell-Drummond, Somerset's Overton twins, Jamie and Craig, and Essex duo Reece Topley and Ben Foakes.
For the full national side, their second Test against the Proteas starts at Headingley on Thursday 2nd August, with England 3.00 to win in Leeds and level the series, while South Africa are 3.10 and the draw is 2.40.
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