Ian Bell warns England against writing off `strong` Oz side

London: English cricketer Ian Bell has warned that Australia remains a potential threat to England`s hopes of completing a hat-trick of successive Ashes wins this season, even though they have been completely routed in the recently concluded Test series in India.

Bell has been given a month off to recover from a busy winter and to spend some time getting to know his son, Joseph, who was born during November`s Test series in India.

Even though only six members of Australia`s 19-strong tour party toured England in 2009, Bell said that Michael Clarke`s side should not be written off, adding that Australia is going to put a very strong fight to snatch back the Ashes trophy from England`s hands.

According to Bell, the Ashes is completely different from any other Test, adding that whatever happened with Australia in India or with England in New Zealand recently will not have much impact in this series.

Bell further said that both teams are going to be ready for the Ashes and are equally desperate to win, adding that he looked forward to the series which will be made more exciting with fresh faces and the intense competitiveness.

Bell also said that the Australia A side had given a strong fight to the England Lions recently, and added that it gave the Australians even more experience against English cricketers which he added, will help them in the Ashes.

While England were struggling to draw 0-0 in their three-Test series in New Zealand , Australia were trounced 4-0 in India, with the fourth Test in Delhi ending in three days.