Bopara has a point to prove

AT THE CREASE WITH<br /><strong>ANDY LLOYD<br /><br /></strong>I&rsquo;M NOT expecting much from England at the Champions Trophy, but the stage is set for Ravi Bopara to answer his critics and prove he can still be a top international batsman.<br /><br />Bopara has had his opportunities this year but has been a major disappointment, failing to pass 50 in his last 16 England innings and being dropped during the Ashes series. <br /><br />Now he has a chance to redeem himself at the Champions Trophy, where he is likely to be part of the first XI. The stakes are high for the Essex batsman, however, and he runs the risk of being frozen out of the set-up for an extended spell if he doesn&rsquo;t make amends.<br /><br />Kent&rsquo;s Joe Denly is another man who will be worth watching. His batting was one of the few highlights of the recent 6-1 one-day drubbing by Australia and I like the look of him &ndash; he seems to have character. Now he needs to show his performances were no fluke. <br /><br /><strong>VERY TRICKY</strong><br />Individuals aside, it&rsquo;s hard to see England doing much &ndash; in fact, if you back them then you need your head read. They are the lowest ranked team in their group and face a very tricky opener tomorrow against Sri Lanka, who looked the complete one-day side in their win over South Africa on Tuesday. New Zealand, who are England&rsquo;s best bet of a win, should not be underestimated either.<br />