London: Skipper Andrew Strauss is convinced England can gain a key advantage by beating Australia in the five-match one-day series starting on June 22, in order to set things right ahead of their title defence this winter.
England begins their Ashes defence in Brisbane on November 25, and has already seized the early initiative over Australia with their crushing victory in last month`s World Twenty20 final in Barbados.
After their Ashes win last summer, England lost a one-day series 6-1, but Strauss believes it will be different this time.
"Last summer`s one-day matches were hard for both teams because they followed so soon after the Ashes. This time, the sub-text to the series will be that the Ashes are coming up and so is the World Cup next year," The Sun quoted him, as saying.
"They will be five important games for both sides in their preparation towards those events. We see it as a chance to test ourselves against the best one-day side in the world. This is a great opportunity," he said.
"We`ve made significant improvements in the 50-over team over the last nine months. We will also have Paul Collingwood back, after he missed the Test series against Bangladesh.”
"It will be great to chat through with him some things they did in the World Twenty20 and see if they are transferable to the 50-over game. I`m excited about our one-day cricket in general. We have started to play an aggressive style," Strauss added.
The squad has been trimmed to just 13 players as England are in a triangular tournament against India A and New Zealand A at the same time.