Matt Floyd's Team of the Week: James Anderson and Mitchell Starc in the XI
Sky Cricket presenter's XI features a New Zealander; an Ashes hopeful; and a Women's Ashes all-rounder...
By Matt Floyd - @mattkfloyd
Last Updated: 11/11/17 8:29am
My Team of the Week is back!
And with the Ashes less than two weeks away, players from both sides are starting to hit form...
MARK STONEMAN (England)
There is plenty of doubt surrounding England's top five but at least Stoneman has hit form in the warm-up matches, nailing down down the other opening slot alongside Alastair Cook. Three consecutive fifties in the first two warm-up games means he should go into the first Test at the Gabba full of confidence.
COLIN MUNRO (New Zealand)
He joined a club of just four players to have hit two T20I centuries when he smashed an unbeaten 109 in the second T20I against India. His scores in the format this year are 0, 101, 0, 0, 7, 109* and 0 - it's been quite a ride!
STEVE SMITH (Australia) - captain
The Australia captain's preparations for the first Test are coming along nicely. His seam attack is looking sharp and he made 76 and 127 against Western Australia this week in the Sheffield Shield. I'd rather be in his shoes right now than Joe Root's, that's for sure!
JAKE LEHMANN (South Australia)
One of Australia's main issues heading into the Ashes is who will bat at no. 6 in Brisbane. Jake Lehmann is the latest to make a claim with scores of 103 and 93 against Victoria. The question is will having his father as head coach be a help or hindrance to his chances?
JONNY BAIRSTOW (England) - wicketkeeper
A couple of aggressive unbeaten knocks will have settled Bairstow's nerves in Australia. With Stokes out and a fragile looking top order, his runs are going to be even more vital than usual.
ELLYSE PERRY (Australia Women)
She started the only Women's Ashes Test brilliantly with three wickets in England's first innings and now she is currently holding her side's reply together. She is currently 70 not out heading into day three of the Test at the North Sydney Oval and her contribution could be the difference as the Aussies look to retain the urn with victory.
CHRIS WOAKES (England)
He provided some much needed good news for England by taking them to the brink of victory in their second warm-up match against a Cricket Australia XI at the Adelaide Oval with four quick wickets. He is another massively important cog in Root's side and his performance with the ball on day three would have given the whole squad a lift.
SIMON MILENKO (Cricket Australia XI)
The 28-year-old did his best to disrupt England's preparations in Adelaide with 5-34 to go with an almost run-a-ball fifty. No doubt Mitchell Starc will have noticed a potential vulnerability in the England batting line-up to left-arm seam.
MITCHELL STARC (Australia)
Talking of Starc, he warmed up for the Ashes with an eight-wicket haul against South Australia and two hat-tricks against Western Australia. It will be fascinating to see how the tourists deal with the three-pronged pace attack of Starc, Hazlewood and Cummins. If the frontline batsmen don't stand up to the challenge, we could have a repeat of the 2013/14 series all over again.
DANIEL FALLINS (Cricket Australia XI)
The 22-year-old leg spinner marked his first-class debut with a five-wicket haul, including four of England's top six. If he doesn't play another game in his career he will still have the wicket of Joe Root in his back pocket.
JIMMY ANDERSON (England)
Seven wickets on the tour so far, once again he is setting the example for the rest to follow. The general consensus is that England's bowling can't rely solely on Anderson but if he has a series where he is somewhere close to his best it will be a huge boost to Joe Root and the rest of the squad.
Do you agree with Matt's XI? Let us know on Twitter @SkyCricket...