Australia v England, 5th Test, Sydney, 1st day
Australia Elect to Bat in Final Ashes Test03-Jan-2011 01:50:00 GMT
Sydney: Australia captain Michael Clarke won the toss and chose to bat first in the fifth Ashes Test against an unchanged England side at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Monday.
England lead the series 2-1 and, as holders, are already guaranteed to retain the Ashes in Australia for the first time in 24 years but the hosts could still tie the series.
Clarke is captaining his country in a Test for the first time in place of the injured Ricky Ponting, who misses a Test for the first time in six years with a broken finger.
"I think the wicket looks pretty good ... I'm confident if the rain stays away, we can put on a good total," Clarke said.
"It's a new year, 2011, I know all the boys have been working pretty hard," he added.
England have stuck with the line-up that retained the Ashes with an innings and 157 run victory in Melbourne last week, seamer Tim Bresnan keeping his place in the side at the expense of Steve Finn, who played the first three Tests.
"Should be something in it for the bowlers this morning," said England captain Strauss. "I think we all know the wicket's going to flat out as the day goes on.
Australia announced their team on Sunday with debuts awarded to exciting young batting talent Usman Khawaja, who replaces Ponting, and left-arm spinner Michael Beer.
Australia: Shane Watson, Phillip Hughes, Usman Khawaja, Michael Clarke (captain), Mike Hussey, Steve Smith, Brad Haddin, Mitchell Johnson, Peter Siddle, Ben Hilfenhaus, Michael Beer.
England: Andrew Strauss (captain), Alastair Cook, Jonathan Trott, Kevin Pietersen, Paul Collingwood, Ian Bell, Matt Prior, Graeme Swann, James Anderson, Tim Bresnan, Chris Tremlett.