Time is running out for Joe Denly to prove he merits a place in England’s squad for the ICC Cricket World Cup, admits former England spin king Graeme Swann.

Denly’s credentials were put under the microscope in the third ODI against Pakistan on Tuesday as the Kent leg-spinner replaced the rested Adil Rashid in the starting line-up.

But his audition did not go to plan as Eoin Morgan pulled him out of the attack after just one over in Bristol after bowling three full tosses in an over that cost his side nine runs.

And Swann believes Denly, who did not get a chance to bat in England’s six-wicket victory, has not done enough to dislodge one of his more established counterparts in the squad.

“Joe is a great cricketer but you can’t really go on a game in which he bowls one over and doesn’t bat, but it’s good to have a strong squad,” said former off-spin bowler Swann.

“You need people coming in at any point who can fill a void but I think it comes down more to the ball and if England can keep a lid on the opposition and go for less than they score.

“Their batting is the best in the world, their batting line-up when it comes to one-day cricket is, in my opinion, the best in the world by quite a way.

“No team in the world want to come and bowl against England not at all and that’s a brilliant position to be in, but it’s good to have people like Joe vying for the team.

“With no disrespect, they are probably looking at the smaller roles in the team as the bigger roles - the top order and the bowlers - more or less pick themselves.

“They are the best in the world, they’re the best we’ve got, so it’s going to be hard for some of the fringe players to get a look in. I just hope the bowlers can outshine themselves.”

Swann was speaking at a Barmy Army warm up event at The Oval, where he went head to head with YouTuber Charlie Morley to come up with a new song for England ODI captain Eoin Morgan.

The host nation, the world’s number one side, showed their batting power against Pakistan as they continued their preparations for the World Cup with a comprehensive victory in Bristol.

Jonny Bairstow smashed a sensational century as England reached 359-4 completed their second-highest run-chase without the rested Jos Buttler, Jofra Archer and Rashid.

And despite still having some concerns about the amount of runs England’s bowlers are conceding, Swann is feeling confident about their chances of lifting the trophy.

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“England are going well and this is probably the first time ever England are genuine favourites to win the World Cup, they are looking brilliant - especially with the bat,” he said.

“They beat Pakistan in Bristol without Jos Buttler even batting and I think they are in with a great shout to win it, my one worry is with the ball they are still quite expensive.

“If they have an off day with the bat, it may not paper over the cracks enough but a good team dovetails all the time and I reckon this England team will be able to do that.

“If they do have a bad day with the bat, the bowlers will come to the fore, and vice versa so it’s very exciting and I can’t wait to see how it all plays out over the summer.

“It is going to be tough for bowlers during the Cricket World Cup as all one-day cricket is weighted in favour of the batsmen these days and it has been for years.

“To be honest, and I obviously felt differently when I was playing because I was a bowler and was on the brunt end, people don’t pay to come and watch a low scoring game.

“They love seeing boundaries crunched and smashed so I have no problem if the bowlers have a bit of nightmare just as long as our bowlers have less of nightmare than the others.”

  • ICC Cricket World Cup Trophy Tour, driven by Nissan, commences 100-day tour of England and Wales and will be at over 100 locations and events before arriving back in London ready for the opening match on May 30