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Bopara backs "brilliant" Strauss

England all-rounder Ravi Bopara has backed captain Andrew Strauss to continue his One Day International (ODI) improvement ahead of their fixture with Pakistan at Lord’s on Monday 20 September.

Strauss has been in excellent form with the bat, hitting a match-winning 126 against Pakistan at Headingley as England took a 2-0 series lead.

It has not prevented some members of the press from questioning his place at the top of the order however, particularly with the likes of Kevin Pietersen currently out of the team.

Middlesex opener Strauss has a good record at the Home of Cricket though, and will be keen to prove the doubters wrong when he returns to his home ground next Monday.

The 33-year-old has hit more than half of his 21 ODI sixes this summer as England have adopted a successful aggressive mentality against Bangladesh, Pakistan and Australia.

Batting brilliantly

Bopara, who will play his first international at Lord’s since the 2009 Ashes victory, backed his skipper to carry on batting aggressively - and scoring big totals.

"You want Andrew Strauss in your team." said 25-year-old Bopara.

"His power-hitting has certainly come on over the last few years and he has got two hundreds in the last three games.

"He has batted brilliantly in the last few one-dayers.

"We all know how hard it is to get one-day hundreds, it is a very difficult thing to do but he is doing it."

Strauss famously made a century on his debut at Lord’s against New Zealand in 2004 and has posted his name on the Honours Board on a three further occasions.

He made his first ODI century against the West Indies in NW8 that same summer before losing his place in the ODI team in 2006

However, he was brought back as captain in 2009 and has made three of his five ODI centuries since his appointment.

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