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The sides briefly came out, and the England staff had time to present Jofra Archer with his debut test cap. But the rain began to fall again minutes later, before the captains came out for the coin toss.
The sides will now aim to start the match tonight, with an extra half-hour of play allowed on each of the remaining four days to make up for the day lost.
Australia lead the five-match series 1-0 after an emphatic 251-run win at Edgbaston.