England have gone ahead in the five-match series against Australia with a five-wicket win in the first ODI at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. The English have recorded the highest ODI run-chase at this ground.
Opener Aaron Finch and Mitchell Marsh built Australia’s innings from early blows. They put on 118 for the fourth wicket Finch converted his start to a ninth ODI century. He made 107 runs from 119 deliveries hitting 10 fours and 3 sixes. Marsh scored 50 off 68 balls.
Australia lost their two set batsmen quickly. Marcus Stoinis and Tim Paine rebuilt the innings. They added 80 runs for the sixth wicket. Stoinis raced to his half-century in 37 balls. He hammered 40-ball 60 runs including 5 fours and 2 sixes. Paine, who played his first ODI after almost seven years, scored 27 off 31.
Australia posted 304/8 in 50 overs on board. Liam Plunkett and Adil Rashid went for more than seven runs per over but took three and two wickets respectively.
England openers Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow made a flying start. They added 53 in just 4.4 overs. Bairstow was caught behind for 14 off Mitchell Starc. Alex Hales came in at no.3 but managed only 4 runs. The English scored 87/2 in the first powerplay.
Roy and Joe Root lifted England in the third-wicket partnership. Roy reached his fourth ODI hundred in 92 balls. He soon went on to register his second 150+ score. He not only broke his own high score of 162, but also set the highest score by a Englishman in ODIs.
Roy played a scintillating knock of 180 runs from 151 deliveries including 16 fours and 5 sixes. He was caught off by Starc. Roy and Root made 221-run stand.
Root stayed at the crease till the end. He scored unbeaten 91 runs from 110 balls with 5 fours. England achieved their target with seven balls to go. Previously no team managed to chase a 300+ score at MCG.
Australia 304/8 in 50 overs (Finch 107, Stoinis 60; Plunkett 3/71, Rashid 2/73)
England 308/5 in 48.5 overs (Roy 180, Root 91*; Cummins 2/63, Starc 2/71)
England won by five wickets
Man of the Match: Jason Roy (180)
-Ruffin, Correspondent, bdcrictime.com