Ashes 2013/14: Tim Bresnan will suit Adelaide conditions better than Tremlett
Ballance should bolster middle-order and Root can handle batting at three, says Gower
Last Updated: 05/12/13 6:21am
Australia captain Michael Clarke has predicted that the Yorkshire duo will play for the tourists in place of Chris Tremlett and Jonathan Trott, who returned home with a stress-related illness in the wake of England's first Test defeat in Brisbane.
Sky Sports presenter Gower believes Clarke has called it right and says that Surrey seamer Tremlett will be dropped after returning match figures of 4-120 at the Gabba.
"Everything that we've heard about this pitch suggests that Bresnan is a better pick than someone who is tall and lanky, who will try to get bounce out of a pitch only to find the bounce isn't there," said Gower.
"Tremlett wasn't quick at Brisbane - you could see that very obviously - and if there is less bounce here then that's not going to help him at all. So someone like Bresnan will suit conditions better."
In Trott's absence, the selectors must decide whether to promote Ian Bell or Root to three in the batting order - a position that Gower says can be fraught with difficulty.
"Going up to three is not beyond Root by any stretch of the imagination because he's a very good player," he said.
"The only thing is that what you do get at three is this: when it becomes designated as a problem position, the next cab off the rank goes 'oh, is it my turn?' You are slightly worried about the connotations of the position and you almost forget to play the game."
Gower is also tipping Ballance to get the nod from the selectors for the vacant spot in the middle-order ahead of both Jonny Bairstow and the uncapped Ben Stokes.
"Stokes is a bit of a blindside pick on the grounds that you might need an extra bowler on a flat pitch," he said. "I think that is probably going to count as confused thinking.
"Let's face it: the one thing that England were really short on in Brisbane was runs. You can do nothing in the game of cricket without runs on the board.
"Three years ago England got runs on the board; Kevin Pietersen played a brilliant knock for his double hundred and if he does anything like that again, England will be in a great position."
Both Clarke and England captain Alastair Cook have vowed that their sides will play 'tough' cricket following the furore over the level of sledging in the first Test but while Gower welcomes fierce competition, he doesn't want to see players cross the line.
"I think one or two of the players are quite looking forward to a bit of a ruckus or a rugby match out there," he said. "I'm rather hoping that isn't going to be the case.
"You don't need to say much on a cricket field to make your point. There is no such thing as a friendly Test match but there are standards which we need to adhere to. Make it a spectacle because of the cricket."
Watch day one of the second Ashes Test between Australia and England from 11pm on Wednesday, on Sky Sports 2.