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Champions Trophy Betting: England call on Bopara to prove his talent

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Following the announcement of England's 15-man squad for next month's ICC Champions trophy, Callum Davis casts his eye over the team and takes a look at the winner's market with just over a month to go until the start of the tournament in Cardiff.

"You get the impression that the next few months of fixtures will be Bopara’s last chance to justify the England selector’s questionable faith in him."

This year's competition will be hosted in England and Wales and is set to be the last ICC Champions Trophy to be staged before it is scrapped. The tournament presents an unwelcome set of extra fixtures for England in an already busy Summer schedule, however Alistair Cook's side will be eager to lift the trophy on their home turf.

The one major surprise from the squad announcement is the return of Essex all-rounder, Ravi Bopara. Bopara hasn't featured for England since he was dropped from the Twenty20 side after this year's World Cup in Sri Lanka. Bopara has not represented England in the 50 over format since September last year when his torrid run of performances against South Africa saw him dropped from the one day side with just 22 runs to show for his four innings in South Africa.
 
Bopara had previously failed to receive call ups from England Head Coach, Ashley Giles, missing trips to India and New Zealand earlier this year. However this latest selection will be a huge boost for Bopora at a time when he must have feared his international career was over. Despite only averaging 30 in 83 one day internationals for England, it's likely that his added bowling prowess contributed to his inclusion over fellow all-rounders Samit Patel and Luke Wright, who both fail to make the squad. You get the impression that the next few months of fixtures will be Bopara's last chance to justify the England selector's questionable faith in him.

Bopara joins Chris Woakes in the squad after the Warwickshire youngster impressed in the Winter tour to New Zealand and looks to be establishing himself as a regular member of Ashley Giles' one day side.  After an extended break from action with an elbow injury, Graeme Swann makes his international return and will partner James Tredwell as England's spin options for the tournament. With Kevin Pietersen missing from the squad due to an ongoing knee injury, England fans will be hoping that Joe Root will be able extend his impressive start to his international career and fill the void left by Pietersen's considerable absence.

South Africa, the team ranked as number one in the ICC ODI Rankings, are the current favourites to claim the trophy at odds of [4.6] to win the tournament. Reigning champions Australia are [6] to repeat their victory in 2009. Recent World Twenty20 Champions the West Indies are [13] to win their second trophy of the year  England are sitting as second favourites at the moment and can be backed at [5.4] if you fancy them to overcome the pressure of hosting and be crowned champions.

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