Allan Border claims Australia are taking 'dangerous' risk ahead of the Ashes

Allan Border says Australia’s decision not to play any warm-up matches before the World Test Championship final and Ashes series is ‘fraught with danger’.

Australia will attempt to retain the Ashes on English soil this summer and win an away series against the old enemy for the first time since 2001.

For the first time in Ashes history, Australia will not face any local county sides before or during their tour of England.

Instead, Pat Cummins’ side will prepare for the Ashes and the World Test Championship final against India with a training camp in Beckenham featuring wicket practice and net sessions.

But ex-captain Border fears Australia have made the ‘wrong decision’ and says playing so little cricket ahead of six massive Tests is ‘fraught with danger’.

‘I don’t care how hard you work in the nets, nothing replaces game time,’ Border told Fox Cricket.

‘I’m really surprised we’re just allowing the Ashes tour to be so condensed with no cricket between the games, but that’s the way it is.

‘I get it, we’ve got IPLs and T20s, I understand. The game’s moved on. But I think there’s an opportunity there for us to go to England early and play a couple of games… just to polish things off a bit.

‘It just doesn’t feel right not to play any cricket leading into an Ashes series. I just think that’s fraught with danger… there’s something gnawing at me saying it’s the wrong decision.’

The World Test Championship final will be played at The Oval between June 7-11, before the five-match Ashes begins five days later at Edgbaston.

Several Australia players – including Steve Smith and Marnus Labuschagne – have already arrived in England and have been building up to the Ashes by playing in the County Championship.

But four players will made a swift journey to England after the Indian Premier League finishes this weekend.

Australia spinner Nathan Lyon was asked about the lack of warm-up matches last week and said: ‘When are we going to fit it in?

‘You look at the schedule, if a few guys make the IPL final, they won’t be arriving in England until five days before the World Test Championship final.

‘So it’s quite hard to schedule in a tour game these days. I’m not really sure when we’re meant to do it. There’s no point in us only playing with seven players against a county side.

‘The players now are extremely professional, everyone is doing the work. There’s of lot of net sessions happening back here in Australia.

‘Yes, we get that it’s not game practice or anything like that, but it’s not like we’re sitting at home twiddling our thumbs. We’re doing the work and I know that we’ll be ready.’

Meanwhile, England have been handed a fitness boost with Ollie Robinson cleared to link up with the red-ball squad for the Ireland Test after an injury scare.

Robinson suffered discomfort during Sussex’s County Championship match with Glamorgan and was seen wearing a protecting boot on his left ankle.

But a scan has come back clear, allowing Robinson to join his England team-mates for the Ireland Test at Lord’s, though he is expected to be rested along with James Anderson, who is nursing a minor groin problem.

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