Ashes: Who will win cricket's famous urn? Our Australian and English reporters make their prediction

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The Ashes are back and it promises to be a hotly-anticipated series.

England won the previous series 3-2 on home soil, but were whitewashed 5-0 on their most recent trip down under in 2013-14.

Predicting the outcome of the Ashes are two of our reporters - Adelaide-born Patrick Glover and Englishman Tom Norris - who play for Mochdre and Hawarden respectively in the North Wales Cricket League

Ahead of tomorrow's opening Test, Patrick and Tom discuss how the Ashes will be won or lost, and for their prediction on who will get their hands on cricket's famous little urn.

Okay guys, first up ... how much will your life change in the next couple of months staying up in the small hours? Do you need much sleep?

Tom Norris: Things have really cranked up since the start of the week with the office full of Ashes discussion ranging from team news, the Aussies poor sledging attempts and how to get BT Sport!

I'm glad I can function on not much sleep because, for me, it's the best sporting event there is and an absolute a must see, so trying to watch as much as possible is imperative - and sleep depriving.

Our reporters: Englishman Tom Norris, left, and Adelaide-born Patrick Glover

As for BT Sport, I've got it via the app on my phone for now, but that's because of rain forecast for Brisbane.

Once we've got that draw out of the way, I might have to invest properly.

It's a real shame that there aren't highlights anywhere else, but I suppose that's a different topic for a different day.

Patrick Glover: The Australian summer of cricket is always a time I look forward to and this year is no exception.

Usually I am there in my home town of Adelaide watching the Test match and am sad that I won't be there for the historic first day/night Ashes Test.

But we have got BT Sport set up at home so I'm all geared up to spend some late nights in front of the television on weekends.

Cricket takes up a lot of my summer, but being in the UK may be a little different with the time differences.

I love my cricket, but I do enjoy my sleep and I think the comfort of my bed may win out on this occasion.

However my waking hours will be spent analysing scorecards and highlights packages from the previous day's play.

So many classic Ashes battles in the 70s, 80s, 90s and 00s live long in the memory ... is their enough star quality in the current Australia and England squads to stir another?

PG: The last Ashes series in Australia was amazing - a 5-0 whitewash with the scare factor of Mitchell Johnson tearing through the England batting order a sight Australians still love to watch.

The 2005 series in the UK was also a classic, although the Aussies were on the wrong side of the ledger.

This series, there aren't as many massive names that people will look to to create a memorable series.

But there are always heroes and villains in every series and I think there are a few on Australia's side that could make this another memorable one for Australia.

Another Mitchell, Starc, is set to take over the role of Pommy basher this series as he sends down his left arm thunderbolts.

While from the other end the exciting Pat Cummins is set to do the same. This could make for a similar series to the last Aussie Ashes series. 

TN: It should be another memorable series - but not necessarily because of the high quality cricket on show.

And it's hard not see the series going the distance as well. Rain in Brisbane looks set to wash out the opener, something the Aussies will be worried about as it's their 'fortress'.

From then on it could all depend on the toss, although Australia seem certain their bowling attack will blitz the England batting line-up, but as one of the touring party said: "they aren't doing anything we haven't seen before".

Australia's batting line up hardly looks a sure fire thing and it could be about which of the big name players takes the series by the scruff of the neck. Root, Cook, Anderson, Warner, Smith and Starc - it's over to you.

What about the sledging? There doesn't seem to be much of it about these days. Is it important and which players - if any - will Aussie and English fans likely get 'stuck into'?

TN: As touched on earlier Australia have tried to have a go. It strikes me that they are coming out fighting because they are a little worried. Getting Nathan Lyon to come out and sledge the opposition seems laughable at best.

In contrast, England have kept things calm and composed. They've focused on trying to find some form, which is encouraging to see, while Australia have talked themselves stupid - certainly for a team that's far from unbeatable.

Ben Stokes - if he makes it - will get some abuse and Stuart Broad will be on the wrong end of some verbals, but both will relish that.

England are best off leaving David Warner alone as he's the sort to thrive on a heated exchange, while if Starc, Cummins and Hazlewood are getting some it can only be good for the tourists. Tim Paine deserves some stick surely? Or the selectors. A shocking pick.

Thrives on sledging: Australian opener David Warner

PG: It seems to have been pretty tame this year, compared to summers gone by.

I'm sure the love-hate relationship between Davey Warner and Joe Root is still there and the Australian's hatred towards Stuart Broad still lingers from past Ashes series. So I think from and Australian point of view I think they will be two targets.

But unlike previous years, there aren't that many antagonists in either camp, with the likes of Moeen Ali, Alistair Cook and Johnny Bairstow in among some very inexperienced cricketers, I can't see there being too many run-ins from a sledging point of view.

It now seems certain Ben Stokes won't play any part Down Under. Surely a huge loss for the tourists and big advantage for Australia?

PG: Ben Stokes has been in great form of late and will be a massive loss with both the bat and the ball for England. More so with the bat.

I think his loss leaves a big hole in the middle order for the Poms and will expose the inexperience of players like Dawid Millan, James Vince and Mark Stoneman.

This plays right into the Aussies hands being able to exploit the bouncier decks down under to torment the inexperienced batting line up.

In turn more of the work will be left to the like of Cook, Root and Bairstow.

Stokes has had experience in Aussie condition before as well being a part of England's last ashes touring party and having played in the Big Bash, so that experience in itself would have been valuable.

Ready for action: England have picked seamer Jake Ball

TN: There's a rumour going around that Stokes will make it in time for the third Test and I'm quite happy to believe that.

If he was with England from the start I think we'd win, certainly looking at what the Aussies have to offer.

Stokes is pivotal to England and can't be replaced easily. I'm willing to give Jake Ball a go, but he's far from Stokes with bat and ball.

Australia will be breathing a sigh of relief that Stokes hasn't made the trip and it's a sign of how important he is that David Warner has told him he's let his country down - he'd know all about that, right?

I can't help but feel that even though Stokes isn't there that Australia are worried about him appearing at some point, it might be wishful thinking though! If he can make it at some point, his arrival could decide the series.

Where do you see the Ashes being won and lost; and how much importance will be placed on the decision-making of Steve Smith and Joe Root?

TN: The toss? Surely it's win toss, bat first for five Tests. Aside from that, smith's work is done for him in Brisbane - give the ball to the quick lads.

Beyond that it will be a real test of his captaincy. A day-night clash in Adelaide plays into England's hands with Anderson the man to cash in.

Smith might be worried a bit, certainly if his three seamers can't make the break through - or break down, which is perhaps more likely. Will that effect his batting. It would be a shame if it does. Honest!

As for Root, surely his only decision is whether to score 100 or push on and really grind the hosts into the dirt.

He's getting out between 50 and three figures, but it's hard not to get a feeling that he's ready for to post some big numbers.

Good old Lyon pointed out that Root failed last time, get ready to see a man with a point to prove.

PG: There will be important battles with both the bat and the ball. I think a major point will be how the inexperienced English batting line up can cope with the Aussie condition and the raw pace of Starc and Cummins - pace has proved an issue for the tourists before.

Moeen Ali will also find it difficult to have an impact with the ball until the Sydney Test, and by then it could all be over.

The day/night Test could prove an interesting battle with the night-time, swinging conditions, playing into the hands of English stalwart Jimmy Anderson.

The Adelaide Test could also provide the Aussies with a chance, if needed, to try someone different and select the uncapped Chadd Sayers on his home strip to wreak havoc with his swing bowling.

I do not envy Steve Smith right now. The first Test - if he wins the toss - he will have to make the call whether to let his quicks loose on a bouncy Gabba wicket or to bat the Poms out of the Test.

While the WACA will be a win-the-toss-bowl-first scenario, the rest should be bat first if the coin falls your way.

Go on then, give us a series prediction for the Ashes?

PH: I'm going to say 3-1, maybe even 4-0, to Australia.

The Gabba is the Aussie's fortress and the WACA unleashing Starc, Cummins, Hazelwood and perhaps a fourth quick will be too much for the Poms.

I think Mitchell Starc is going to be a key player in this series and has been in great form at state level in the lead up to the series. Hazelwood is a very reliable bowler who has been known to take key wickets and should again this summer.

While with the bat Warner and Smith will be the focal points, eyes will be on uncapped Cameron Bancroft in the first Test to see how he performs after taking the place of, I believe the unlucky, Matt Renshaw

For the visitors Chris Woakes is a very talented cricketer and the Aussies conditions may suit his bowling. Bairstow has been in good form of late and could be one to watch with the bat as well.

Ones to watch: Chris Woakes, left, and Mitchell Starc

TN: England to win 3-1. Bold or stupid? We shall see.

As I've mentioned, the forecast in Brisbane looks awful and time out of the game should (hopefully) be enough to prevent England from going 1-0 down.

I'm sure the last time England managed to do that the final outcome wasn't all that bad, was it? Getting Australia on the back foot heading into an unpredictable day-night Test is ideal.

Woakes and Hazlewood have gone under the radar a little, but are my tips to shine, while this could be a big series with the bat for Bairstow.

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