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Ashes: Fans favour Ian Bell for number three but bookmakers side with Joe Root

Vacant number three: Sky Sports conducted a readers' poll on Monday

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Almost half of Sky Sports Cricket readers think Ian Bell should replace Jonathan Trott at No.3 in the second Ashes Test.

Around 45 per cent of votes in a poll on Monday favoured Bell over Joe Root, who online bookmaker Sky Bet make 8/13 to get the nod from England's selectors.

Bell is Sky Bet's 2/1 second favourite but Kevin Pietersen (10/1) cannot be ruled out just yet, though Michael Carberry (14/1) and Jonny Bairstow (20/1) are big outsiders.

Root attracted 31 per cent of the vote, while Pietersen was a distant third with 19 per cent - and it appears to be a three-horse race with just six per cent choosing 'other'.

Sky Bet trader Ned Brooker said: "Although Bell is more experienced than Root and arguably in better form, it's tough to see England management wanting to disrupt the current line up too much.

"With Root already being moved to six prior to the series, he seems the most logical choice to be moved again."