Skipper Stuart Broad was playing his 50th Twenty20 - becoming the first England player to reach the landmark - and he won the toss and elected to bat.
England must win to keep the series alive and avoid a whitewash in all three formats this winter.
Veteran batsman Brad Hodge returned to Australia colours for the first time in six years as one of two changes.
Left-armer Mitchell Starc was the other new name, as he played for the first time since suffering a back problem during last summer's Ashes series.
Dan Christian and Moises Henriques, who has been called up to the tour of South Africa, dropped out.
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