KEEPING LORD'S WORLD CLASS
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Andrew Strauss admits dropping his replacement as Test opener Nick Compton in favour of Joe Root would be the easiest solution for England's selectors to make ahead of the Investec Ashes series.
The return from injury of Kevin Pietersen has posed a tricky dilemma for England with the first Test at Trent Bridge starting on 10 July, with one of Jonny Bairstow and Compton set to make way.
Compton is looking vulnerable
And two-time Ashes winning skipper Strauss told the Lord's Podcast that, with Root capable of slotting in at the top of the order, Compton - who has made just 54 runs in his past six Test knocks - could be the man left out.
"From what I've seen this summer Compton is looking vulnerable," said Strauss, who retired in 2012 after playing his 100th Test match against South Africa.
"Joe Root has probably shown that he could potentially bat at the top of the order and I suppose the easiest solution is to move him to the top of the order and keep Bairstow at six.
"Given the relative form of the players I think that's the easiest thing to do."
Root is a certainty to retain his place in the team after taking to international cricket with aplomb, including making scores of 40, 71, 104 and 28 in the two-Test series against the Kiwis this spring.
He is yet to open in a Test match though, and Strauss accepted that it would be asking a lot of the 22-year-old Yorkshireman to do so in his first Ashes engagement.
He added: "The question mark is whether Root is comfortable enough and in good enough form to be able to step up to open the batting.
"It's a very different challenge for him and to open against a good Australia side is going to test his mettle to a certain extent.
"But from what I've seen he looks really cool, calm and composed; he opens the batting for Yorkshire and I wouldn't be surprised if that's the way England go."
Strauss is one of England's most successful Test captain's, winning 24 of his 50 games in charge and playing in three Ashes winning teams.
And the former Middlesex opener, who will be working with Sky Sports as a commentator and analyst during the series, doesn't forsee the Urn changing hands in England this summer.
"England go in there as firm favourites - they've played a lot of good cricket over the past 12 months," he said. "There are no real weaknesses in their side.
"I've got a front row seat to see the Ashes unfold.
"We all know what a speical thing the Ashes series is - both home and away - and this year's going to be no different."
Listen to Strauss discuss the Investec Ashes series, his retirement and Lord's as well as recounting his famous run out by Nasser Hussain on debut in 2004 on the June edition of the Lord's Podcast, which is available to listen to and download via Soundcloud, iTunes and this website.