MANCHESTER    -   Glenn Maxwell (108) and Alex Carey (106) shared a massive 212-run stand to rescue Australia from 73/5 as they chased down 303 to win and take the series 2-1. 

The result leaves Australia just 10 points behind England in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League table. It also ends a five-year streak in which England have not lost a home ODI series, with Australia also the last side to beat them, back in September 2015. Australia started the game in the best possible way, with Mitchell Starc removing Jason Roy and Joe Root with the first two balls of the match after England chose to bat first.

But Jonny Bairstow quickly found his timing and began to pull the hosts out of trouble, accompanied by Eoin Morgan (23). Jos Buttler was unable to get going though, scoring just eight before chipping a catch to cover off Adam Zampa and England found themselves back in a spot of trouble at 96/4 on a good pitch. Sam Billings provided ample support for Bairstow though, and the pair put on 114 before Billings top-edged a reverse-sweep shortly after reaching his fifty. 

Bairstow fell just a few overs later having faced 126 balls for his 112, the opener’s longest innings in the format. Once again, England’s lower order provided crucial late runs as Chris Woakes dashed to an unbeaten 39-ball 53* to boost England to 302/7. After a productive first couple of overs Australia’s chase also stumbled early, with Woakes removing Aaron Finch and Marcus Stoinis for 12 and 4 respectively. 

Those wickets slowed the innings down, and Joe Root’s introduction after the first Powerplay brought more as the part-time spinner claimed the wickets of David Warner and Mitchell Marsh before Marnus Labuschagne was run out by Sam Billings for 20 to leave the visitors in dire straits at 73/5. Alex Carey and Glenn Maxwell proved to be their saviours though, as the pair added runs in a positive manner and soon brought Australia back into contention. Maxwell in particular took advantage of the loose bowling on offer and struck seven sixes in his 108.

Had it not been for Jofra Archer over-stepping, Carey’s knock could have been over before it began when he was caught at third-man on nine runs in the 20th over. However, the third umpire called a no-ball and the Australia wicket-keeper took full advantage as he racked up 106 – his maiden international hundred. 

A late surge from England threatened to once again leave Australia just short, as Maxwell and Carey fell in the 48th and 49th overs respectively, leaving Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins needing to take Adil Rashid’s last over for 10. But any Australian nerves were quickly settled as Starc bludgeoned the first ball of the over down the ground for six, and the left-arm quick completed the chase with a sweep for four with two balls to spare. 

 

Scorecard

ENGLAND:

J Roy c Maxwell b Starc 0

J Bairstow b Cummins 112

J Root lbw b Starc 0

E Morgan c Starc b Zampa 23

J Buttler c Finch b Zampa 8

S Billings c Marsh b Zampa 57

C Woakes not out 53

T Curran b Starc 19

A Rashid not out 11

EXTRAS: (lb 8, nb 1, w 10) 19

TOTAL: (7 wkts, 50 overs) 302

FOW: 1-0, 2-0, 3-67, 4-96, 5-210, 6-220, 7-266

BOWLING: MA Starc 10-0-74-3, JR Hazlewood 10-0-68-0, PJ Cummins 10-0-53-1, A Zampa 10-0-51-3, MR Marsh 6-0-25-0, GJ Maxwell 4-0-23-0. 

AUSTRALIA:

D Warner b Root 24

A Finch lbw b Woakes 12

M Stoinis c Morgan b Woakes 4

M Labuschagne run out 20

M Marsh c Buttler b Root 2

A Carey c Wood b Archer 106

G Maxwell c Curran b Rashid 108

P Cummins not out 4

M Starc not out 11

EXTRAS: (lb 5, nb 1, w 8) 14

TOTAL: (7 wkts, 49.4 overs) 305

FOW: 1-21, 2-31, 3-51, 4-55, 5-73, 6-285, 7-293

BOWLING: CR Woakes 10-0-46-2, JC Archer 9-0-60-1, MA Wood 9-1-40-0, JE Root 8-0-46-2, TK Curran 6-1-40-0, AU Rashid 7.4-0-68-1

TOSS: England

UMPIRES: R Illingworth, A Wharf

TV UMPIRE: Richard Kettleborough

MATCH REFEREE: Chris Broad